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Citizen complaint of the day: Too many damn helicopters over JP

An aggrieved citizen complained this afternoon:

Multiple helicopters hovering over JP right now. It is loud, and unnecessary, and disruptive.

Ed. note: They were there for the warehouse fire on Amory Street.

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Comments

Side by side, coming from points south.

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First the 'aggressive apple pickers' in Brookline, now this.

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Any news on pedestrians that got hit by an suv ouside of Orient heights mbta station on Bennington Street in Eastie around 6:45pm.
keep us Eastbostians updated. Aweful..

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It is obnoxious and unnerving to have a helicopter hovering over your neighborhood as one did this afternoon over mine.

Unless the helicopter was aiding the firefighters, I don't see the point. Is it really just to feed the sensationalist "news" stations?

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What's unnerving is people compiling about nonsense.

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I've been in this city all my life and helicopters are a fairly recent and unnecessary addition to the scene.

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And the number of copters out there is one or 2 less than 15 years ago.

The difference is that they've not been close to your house before.

Fires and car crashes bring the flying things out. It's just the way it is.

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They've hovered over my house plenty and I'm sick and tired of it. This citizen complaint reminded me of just how sick I am of it.

It's unnecessary, disruptive and doesn't help anybody. Hopefully, one of them won't fall from the sky someday, in pursuit of ratings, and hurt people inside it and below.

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Who submitted the complaint.

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See below.

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Most recent was this weekend, when someone decided that flying their recreational helicopter around in loops was worth making thousands of other people's quiet weekend noisy.

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Several times a day?

Several times a week?

Occasionally?

A couple of times in the past 15 years?

Just like you and the complaint maker, I live on the flight path of the helicopters and, for some reason, several aircraft corridors. That is noticeable but not horrible, since the are pretty much going from points A to B. And yes, perhaps on 6 or 7 occasions over the past few years, news helicopters have decided that the aerial view of a funeral at Holy Name or the sky shot of the aftermath of a car crash on Washington Street was worth their time, but the world hasn't ended because of it.

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Guessing you haven't had to deal with this in person, yes? It's not pleasant. A helicopter traveling by or hovering close overhead will prevent you from being able to hear your own television or radio, speak on the phone or even hold a conversation without shouting. it's not "nonsense" to complain about it. If there isn't a pressing public safety need, helicopters over a residential neighborhood are certainly worthy of complaint.

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lbb. There are so many violations of city noise ordinances that are not being addressed. Loud exhaust systems, car stereos, motorcycles. It's the city and we expect noise but so much of it is excessive.

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For years, dozens each day. So loud my windows rattle and so low we sometimes duck. The large matte black ones are the worst. It's gone on long enough that we just stop talking until they pass.

Sorry JP. Welcome to the club.

Seriously though if they would climb a few hundred feet I'd be psyched.

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If a neighbor's car alarm kept going off you would talk to them about it.

How does one complain to a helicopter pilot/news station?

Citizens Connect is probably a good angle to try.

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They were there for the warehouse fire on Amory Street.

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... of how much it cost to fight the fire, versus how much was spent keeping the helicopters in the air for a little footage of the fire.

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One involves public funds, the other a private company.

I'd imagine the $ cost of actually fighting the fire,in addition to damages,is far higher than the cost of sending upa helicopter to video it. Maybe one of these days it'll be a drone instead of a noisy helicopter. Just a matter of time.

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The economy is a big, complex constellation of individual, corporate, and government entities; the emergent result of millions of individual decisions results in an allocation of resources.

The decisions we make at the ballot box on election day determine how the city government allocates funds, e.g., to the fire department. The decisions we make in choosing what to watch on TV determine how advertising dollars flow, which in turn determines what TV stations choose to broadcast, which in turn determines how many helicopters to put in the air and where to send them.

At the end of the day, it is our behavior that directs funds to both the fire engine and the helicopter.

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Oh, hi. That was my citizen complaint. I'm a 'her' by the way. And I stand by my complaint. For the record, I've been a resident of JP for 20 years so I'm not some transplant from the Midwest or wherever that expects silence and calm 24 hours a day. I'm very used to city life. But the southwest corridor is already a traffic lane for helicopters and the noise on a good day is irritating, and when they hover low for hours at a time it is pretty damn excruciating. And this was not some manhunt for an escaped criminal or a kidnapped child. I knew very well that it was a warehouse fire when I submitted the complaint and that these were news copters on a slow news day, looking for something, anything to report on. It is absolutely unnecessary and undermines the quality of life for our neighborhood. And yeah, the city should call off those copters in this case. We have noise ordinances for a reason, and I see no reason why the media shouldn't be held to the same standard as the rest of us. The citizens complaint system exists for these reasons, for the stuff that isn't exactly against the law, but that affects our enjoyment of our home life and neighborhood. The mayors office and your neighborhood representative want to know about this stuff, so they can help improve the quality of life for residents. If people in JP are annoyed by air traffic issues then they should absolutely make it known, otherwise nothing will be done about it. Do you guys ever go to the Wake Up the Earth festival? You know that's celebrating JP's success in keeping the highway out, right? This has always been a neighborhood where people fought for a better quality of life. It's part of what makes JP a great place to live, that people actually care and will fight for what's right.

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Agree with 'Aggrieved' on Amory.

Noise is so hard to regulate. Prolonged excessive noise can bring people close to the breaking point.

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You said it all.

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1. The pesky Constitution guarantees freedom of the press. Like it or not, I think that trumps a noise complaint.

2. I believe the FAA regulates airspace, not the City.

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1. The pesky constitution doesn't mention anything about freedom to hover at a minimum elevation in a helicopter. Freedom of the Press doesn't mean that the Globe can buy a tank, slap a reporter in it, and drive it through the Public Garden in the name of Journalism.

2. I would wager that the Mayor's office has a much better chance of getting traction with the FAA than a random JP resident.

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1. No one has said the press can't cover these events. But there actually are ordinances and regulations pertaining to this stuff that they are supposed to follow. Freedom of press doesn't give a carte blanche to just do whatever they want.

2. If the city receives enough complaints they will work with the FAA to resolve the issue. The average citizen shouldn't have to track down a complaints department at the FAA to try to make themselves heard. Again, this is what the Citizens Connect system was set up for, so the city can facilitate a solution between residents of this city and the appropriate government agencies.

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News = helicopter noise.

And 20 year resident? Newcomer.

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Act your age. Seriously? Hovering helicopters for no public safety reason is cause for complaint. And before you call someone else "newcomer", tell us how many years you've lived in a location that's a regular helicopter flight path.

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I lived in the city for 30 years.
In South Boston, for the duration of the Whitey Bulger trial and any other notorious trial (NEWS), helicopters.
Whenever there is more than the usual horrific traffic (NEWS), helicopters.
In my new city recently, a huge fire burned in an abandoned warehouse during very windy weather for two days, threatening to spread to neighboring residents, (NEWS), helicopters.
If you don't noise of NEWS helicopters when there is something newsworthy happening nearby, shut your windows.

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How on Earth could aerial footage of the courthouse where a trial is being conducted help the viewer to understand anything about the trial? Anything at all?

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Please do not blame "the helicopters" for this annoyance. You need to blame the people who send "the helicopters" to the scene. We're just doing our job. The news stations are the ones who are telling us where to go. The next issue you says is "hovering". None of us where hovering that day and the reason we have to be so low is because Logan Air traffic controllers tell us that's how low we have to be. Trust me, we wish we could be higher, but that's not our decision. Any helicopter noise you hear after dark (when most people are home) is from a medical helicopter flying into one of the hospitals. If you want to complain about them, please see MGH, Brigham & Womans, Tufts Medical Center.

We try to stay as high as possible for safety reasons and noise abatement. Sometimes that just doesn't work. Sorry for you inconvenience.

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None of us were hovering that day

Most of us don't know the difference between "hovering" and "flying around in a tight pattern, more or less over the same area," both of which are noisy.

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I was playing soccer with me friend and accidentally kicked the ball into Jennifer Jones's yard. She yelled at us for playing outside and refused to give us the ball back. I went home and played with yarn the rest of the day...it was all my family could afford.

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I would think hovering helicopters would be a pain to listen to for hours. However, they are not hovering everyday for hours. And if the southwest corridor (which is where Interstate 95 was going to run through, BTW) is busy with helicopter traffic, I don't know what to say to you. Better that than continual car traffic, right? (Thank you Wake Up The Earth Festival folks).

Also, I would think that most folks want a better quality of life for themselves and their families. So it is not just a JP thing.

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However, they are not hovering everyday for hours.

Actually, they are, if you live downtown.

Whenever whenever there's a large event on Boston Common. Whenever there's anything going on involving the state government. (Seriously? How does the aerial footage of the State House help to deepen anyone's understanding of "At this point lawmakers are debating..."? And, fer God's sake, couldn't you use stock footage for that?) Whenever there's an event on City Hall plaza. And, for some reason, when Romney was governor, over the State House most of the time when he was in town (fortunately, not so often later in his term)... possibly, according to folks who sounded as though they knew what they were talking about, because Romney was sort of a freak for security and the trappings thereof.

The medical helicopters coming to and from the hospital just aren't a problem -- pretty much by definition they're dealing with emergencies and in a hurry, so they zip in and zip out quickly and don't hover for hours.

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As someone who has lived in JP a long time, and in the flight paths of copters and planes, I would choose to complain much more about getting airliner noise. And the occasional news copter serves more than a voyeuristic purpose: they show you where the fire is, which way the wind is blowing, and whether it looks likely to spread. I remember trying desperately to find TV coverage a few years ago — well, maybe 5 years ago now — of a housefire on South Street to find out how close it was to my own home. In neighborhoods of wooden houses, you want to know details about the fire. Copters and the visual information the video conveys, is an efficient way to do that.

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There are 2 diametrically opposed viewpoints (the copters are a noisy, unnecessary intrusion versus them being a means to report the news and a minor annoyance) where a middle ground cannot be met.

Welcome to the Universal Hub. Look forward to you hanging around for the winter. I hope you love reasoned, moderate discussions of parking spaces after snowstorms.

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I'm not busting your chops, I'm quite serious. I've used social media in disaster situations to get critical information fast. I'd never count on a television news crew to report on it or a television station to broadcast it in a timely manner.

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Aww, what an inconvenience. *eye roll*

My question is: what was the City supposed to do about it? People with their delicate sensibilities have turned that app in to tattletale central.

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My question is: what was the City supposed to do about it?

Same thing any well run organization does: use data to support fact-based decision making and fact-based policy making. Which, in this case, means logging and analyzing the data to look for patterns, and then acting on those patterns that show significance.... It could be as simple as devoting more police presence to a street corner with multiple complaints about drug dealing, or it could involve showing up at the next Massport meeting with specific facts about where, if any, there are consistent aircraft noise problems in the city.

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I live downtown, if I was going to complain about noise that's all I'd do. In order of annoyance: car horns, sirens, street construction, Logan traffic, drunk people.

Far down on the list is helicopter traffic - I notice most by far the MedFlight helicopters landing at and taking off from Tufts Medical Center. They also service Beth Israel, Boston Medical Center, the Brigham, Children's, and MGH.

We should be so fortunate to not need them and bitch about the noise.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boston_MedFlight

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hovering over a neighborhood and creating a noise issue to get some video for the "news," and a medical helicopter that is actually doing something useful for society. To complain about one is not to be unappreciative of the other.

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I used to live on a top-floor apartment in the Fenway, and frequently had my sleep interrupted by low-flying medflight helicopters. I never thought of complaining (even though, TBH, when leaving the hospital they possibly were not in such a rush and had other options than "let's fly as low as possible over a residential neighborhood"). There is a difference between this and gawker helicopters.

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It's become nothing but a place for entitled asshats to whine like children. Might as well just be a random Facebook page.

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It's become nothing but a place for entitled asshats to whine like children.

How does that make it useless? When I report a broken traffic light or a missed trash pickup, I just report it. And maybe, if I'm particularly interested, I log back in to check the status of my ticket. I don't even see the other tickets that anyone else raises, and I'm sure the people at City Hall who triage them can wade through the junk pretty fast, so frivolous whining complaints have no real effect.

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I might not agree with the complaint, but say the city got 50 complaints about hovering news copters, they might be more inclined to talk to the news stations or FAA to see if something could be done.

Now, when the asshat put a complaint in about David Ivaska posting on Facebook how the yuppies of Southie should have bad things happen to him, that's what it seemed to turn into. That Adam culls the avalanche of complaints and gives us a taste every day just leads to what you write, but not on the governmental level.

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