SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Fed up with a new flight plan at Sacramento International Airport, Natomas residents are complaining that flight noise has suddenly become non-stop.

Residents living in the path of planes about four miles away from the airport say they expected to hear air traffic because of how close they live to the airport, but they say it’s never been this bad. And the bad news: it might get worse.

“When I walk outside to go to the backyard, a plane’s coming over. When I walk out front to get the mail, a plan’s coming over. When I leave the house, there’s a plane coming over,” said Natomas resident Michael McKenna.”Hundreds over our house every day!”

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McKenna and neighbors in the Sundance Lake community of Natomas say that wasn’t always the case.

But Gerges says lately he’s heard planes at all hours of the day.

“I’m supposed to sleep another two, three hours more. And when I try to get back to sleep it’s hard, you know,” said Natomas resident George Gerges.

Is there more airplane traffic than normal heading over Natomas?

Natomas is east of Sacramento International Airport’s east runway, where runway renovations just finished in August 2017.
Since then, air traffic has returned to normal, with planes using both runways to take off.

“You just try to kind of get used to it, to be honest with you,” said a Natomas resident.

But this normal noise won’t be the norm for long. According to a community briefing released by the airport, construction on the west runway is set for 2018 or 2019, which could lead to even more traffic on the east runway and more low-flying planes heading over Natomas.

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“We get enough air traffic as it is and to think that’s going to increase that’s pretty awful,” said a resident.

County Supervisor Phil Serna and councilmember Angelique Ashby sent a letter to the FAA in May 2017 asking for its help to minimize the added activity and its noise.

The FAA’s response: “We’ll attempt to minimize the impact as much as operationally feasible.”

“There’s gotta be a better way,” said McKenna.

His solution?

“If they’re going south, go another mile south over empty fields! And just leave people alone if you can!” he said.

Construction on the west runway will take about eight months to complete. During that time, all planes will land and take off on the east runway, which is closest to Natomas.