I read the letter to the editor by Patty Houts-Hussey and think someone needs to speak up. She claims that two Growlers were recently flying erratically and dangerously.
Nonsense. These Growlers were flying in a sea carrier landing pattern — as that is the reason for the OLF’s existence — and flying close and low and slow is most definitely not erratic.
Her claim is make-believe. Her “fact” that inexperienced crews are dangerous and should fly elsewhere is another odd “fact.”
All air crews that fly to the boat — all aircrews — must practice FCLP’s at the OLF on a regular basis as the skill of landing on the boat during the day and night is a very perishable skill.
If they don’t practice at the OLF, the odds are much greater for them to crash when at the boat. There are new crews and there are very experienced crews, and they all need to constantly hone their skills at OLF. Her focus on “inexperienced” crews is more make-believe.
And I have to smile at the JBLM reference and previous letters to the editor claiming JBLM would be a great solution. JBLM is a very busy place already. JBLM is not located out in the boonies, as some local folks have claimed. For the JBLM runway butts right up next to housing neighborhoods and Interstate 5. The JBLM “solution” is nothing but NIMBY (not in my backyard).
The crews are not “flying at dangerously low and inaccurate angles” — not really sure what that sentence means, and, by the way, yes, there is a tower at the OLF Coupeville, and the aircraft that fly to OLF are in contact with both Naval Air Station Whidbey Island and OLF Coupeville during OLF flight ops, along with a qualified LSO to talk them down to the deck.
The truth is that the OLF is loud. It is there for safety, nothing else. It’s an absolute requirement. And it was there and noisy long before most nearby/noise affected residents moved in and around it.