File Aviation Noise Complaints

July 23, 2017

File aviation noise complaints by clicking on the following link: OAW Noise Complaint Form. (You can also find the link under the File a Complaint menu at the top of this page.)

The form allows you to craft your own message and send it to any or all of several agencies and institutions who are involved in aviation activity in our area. If you are subjected to repeated noise intrusions, feel free to file multiple complaints.

In addition we urge you to contact Governor Kate Brown's citizen line 503-378-4582 or Share Your Opinion Page to voice concerns, as she is responsible for appointing the members of the Port of Portland Board of Commissioners as well as the board members who serve on behalf of the State Board of Aviation.

You can also file complaints with the Department of Environmental Quality DEQ Hotline at 888-997-7888.

Washington County Residents Pelted by Aircraft Noise

Residents in Washington County are routinely plagued by frequent aviation noise intrusions. The biggest offender is the Port of Portland. Without public consent, a democratic vote of the people, or consideration for the environment, this state agency promotes and accommodates flight training activity on behalf of private training schools, the largest of which is Hillsboro Aero Academy, a school that is owned in large part by out of state investors.

The Academy trains pilots at two Port owned general aviation airports - Hillsboro and Troutdale. A review of the records suggests that 80 to 90 percent, perhaps more, of all take-offs and landings at the Hillsboro Airport are training operations. Many of the students are recruited from outside the country. The implication is that the Port and its FAA accomplice routinely invest public monies specifically to train foreign pilots. In so doing these agencies willfully and autocratically burden impacted communities with noise, toxic emissions, safety and security risks.

PCC Aviation Science Students Degrading the Environment and Livability

Student pilots enrolled in the publicly funded Portland Community College (PCC) Aviation Sciences program play a major role in undermining the livability and quality of life of area residents. PCC contracts with Hillsboro Aero Academy to provide the approximately 270 hours of flight training each student is required to log prior to receiving certification. To put this in perspective, 270 hours is equal to 11 days of noise per student. Assuming 100 students are enrolled, this translates into more than 3 years of noise, the impact of which is borne by people who are expected to foot the bill while being denied a voice in the process.

The disdain PCC has long demonstrated towards the community in regards to the environment, public health, and livability by investing public educational dollars in an effort to increase profits for themselves, the Port and private aviation business interests should prompt voters to question their support for future ballot measures. Why should taxpayers subsidize a school that aligns with totalitarian regimes, poisons the air, generates oft-times relentless noise, disrupts sleep, and leaves the community vulnerable to safety and security risks?

Pilot licensure also requires students to accrue night-time flying experience, which leads to sleep disruption and deprivation for impacted residents. In addition general aviation night flights are known to present additional risk factors. It is noteworthy that a July 2015 night-time helicopter crash in Newberg resulted in the death of the flight instructor and student pilot who was receiving training through Klamath Community College. The accident prompted the President of Klamath Community College to state that the school did not include night-time flying in its curriculum.[1] Sadly, PCC does not abide by this same restriction. On the contrary, PCC encourages its aviation science students to run roughshod over the rights of others both during day and night-time hours with no consideration whatsoever for those on the ground.

Aviation industry documentation cites a number of reasons for the heightened risk posed by night-time flying including, but not limited to, reduced visibility, increased spatial disorientation, and fatigue.[2]

Per a 2012 Plane & Pilot article,

"Accident statistics suggest that flying by night accounts for about 10% of the general aviation accidents, but 30% of the fatalities. That suggests night flying must be inherently more dangerous than aviating when the sun is up. The rules for night flying are more stringent in many countries than they are in the U.S., apparently in recognition of an increased level of risk."[3]

Despite these documented risks PCC, the Port, Hillsboro Aero Academy and others who place their self interest and personal gain above the greater good, continue to subject area residents to sleep disruption, health impacts, and safety risks associated with recreational flying and flight training in Washington County.


[1] House, Kelly. Man Killed in Newberg Helicopter Crash Identified as Klamath Community College Student. Oregonian/OregonLive. (7/5/17). Accessed on 7/23/17 at

[2] Trescott, Max. Night Flying Safety. AVweb. (11/6/05). Last accessed on 7/23/17 at

[3] Cox, Bill. Twenty Things You May Not Know About Night Flying. Plane & Pilot: Aircraft Mechanic School. (5/22/12). Last accessed on 7/23/17 at

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