Takeoff of a Boeing 737-200 could reach 107.8 dBA at the end of the runway and 94.8 dBA over residential areas in the arr. de Saint-Hubert, according to data captured by two sound level meters set up by the Anti-pollution Committee of Longueuil Airport (CAPA-L). Data that Développement Aéroport de Saint-Hubert – Longueuil (DASHL) completely discredits.
Among the data recorded by the two devices, the capture of 107.8 dBA taken at the end of runway 06, as well as that taken at the end of runway 24 D, in August, worried the CAPA-L. The grouping also reveals a capture of 94.8 dBA near Perras and Gareau streets in September.
“A Boeing 737-200 which takes off in the middle of the night and which reaches this noise level is socially unacceptable and harms the health of citizens”, judges the CAPA-L.
According to the 2018 World Health Organization guidelines, the recommended exposure level for nighttime air traffic noise is 40 dBA. However, this data represents an average noise level during the night.
Since August, sound level meters have been installed non-continuously “in places where there are several complaints made by our members or at the request of one of them,” indicates the CAPA-L. A calibrator allows us to make sure we are taking accurate measurements. ”
CAPA-L also reiterates that public consultations and impact studies are necessary “before any development”.
Nothing of an acoustic study
According to DASH-L president Charles Vaillancourt, CAPA-L measurements have no value.
“A sound intensity measurement is only of value within the framework of an acoustic study carried out with devices professionally calibrated according to rigorous scientific standards and by specialists trained in the matter,” he explains. The measures put forward here do not meet any of these criteria. “
The locations are not representative of the citizen experience and have the effect of “producing sensational results,” he said.
Sound exposure studies have been carried out by the Airport. Mr. Vaillancourt explains that the noise impact of aerial activities is thus quantified in a more representative way than a single intensity measurement. “The duration, frequency and tone of noises as well as the distance from the source are taken into account.”
These new curves will be unveiled at the same time as the Airport master plan. The latter was expected in April, but everything was postponed due to the pandemic.
Saying to understand that exceptions can be granted for essential services, the CAPA-L again requests that DASH-L propose to Transport Canada restrictions on night flights.
The committee claims to have recorded 45 movements of Chrono Aviation’s Boeing 737-200s in September, including 17 night flights.
In March 2019, the company said night flights related to the contract with mining company Baffinland Iron Mines would be limited to one per week.
A motion for an interlocutory injunction against night flights was also filed in August 2019 by the CAPA-L, then was contested by the respondents. The appearance scheduled for October 21 has been postponed.
“My only comment is that the real number for night movements in September is 6! We are far from 17! ”, Replied Chrono Aviation vice-president Dany Gagnon, called to react.
DASH-L does not plan to restrict its hours of operation. “The airport, by virtue of its mission and because of the operational requirements of the emergency services based there (SQ, GRC, army, aeromedical evacuations, etc.), must remain open at all times.”
As for public consultations, they are required of Transport Canada when major changes occur at the airport and “DASH-L complies with these regulations,” says Charles Vaillancourt.