A House/Senate conference committee removed language inserted by U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) in the final FAA re-authorization bill that would have mandated helicopters transiting parts of Long Island to fly off its North Shore at a minimum altitude of 2,500 feet. However, Schumer said that the FAA will mandate the requirement by this summer anyway and claimed victory. “Long Island will not continue to be the Wild West for low-flying, disruptive and noisy helicopters,” he said. The “North Shore Route” had been voluntary since 2007, but had the unintended consequence of concentrated helicopter noise. The Eastern Region Helicopter Council opposed mandating it, instead favoring spreading helicopter flights evenly over the north and south shores as well as the center island.
Schumer Provision Stripped from FAA Re-authorization Bill
- March 4, 2012, 1:20 AM