Media Attention

June 21, 2017

Town Hall meeting called by Bell Helicopter to address citizens concerns.  Link is available on the City of Keller website.

 https://www.facebook.com/events/1895158120724200/?acontext=%7B%22source%22%3A5%2C%22page_id_source%22%3A99592653382%2C%22action_history%22%3A[%7B%22surface%22%3A%22page%22%2C%22mechanism%22%3A%22main_list%22%2C%22extra_data%22%3A%22%7B%5C%22page_id%5C%22%3A99592653382%2C%5C%22tour_id%5C%22%3Anull%7D%22%7D]%2C%22has_source%22%3Atrue%7D

April 6, 2017

From the City of Keller, Texas  (Regarding meeting in which citizens of Keller, TX were not allowed to attend)

Bell Helicopter routes over Northeast Tarrant County, their impacts on local residents and plans for the future were the topics of discussion on March 30 as Keller officials had the opportunity to meet with city managers and mayors representing other affected cities as well as Bell Helicopter, the Federal Aviation Administration and Alliance Airport. Here’s the latest:
HISTORY
Regular flights by Bell Helicopter over Keller started once the company moved its global training facility away from Alliance Airport to its northeast Fort Worth campus over the summer of 2015.
Bell Helicopter’s options in selecting routes in this area are limited by a number of factors, including airspace for DFW International Airport, Alliance Airport and Meacham International Airport. Further, on any given day, their flight path can be altered based on weather conditions and other aircraft traffic nearby.
The company’s original flight path used the Hwy. 377 corridor to fly both to and from their training space at Justin Field just north of the Texas Motor Speedway, flying about a 1/4-mile from the highway on each side to provide the distance necessary for helicopters to safely pass each other. In response to complaints from residents along the Hwy. 377 route, Bell officials chose to split the route, traveling northbound along the Rufe Snow corridor and returning south along Hwy. 377.
Representatives with the Federal Aviation Administration confirmed at the March 30 meeting that Bell’s current route and operations meet established national safety requirements. They and representatives with Alliance Airport also confirmed information that Bell has relayed to city officials in the past regarding the altitude and location restrictions of airspace in this region.
Having Bell operations on a consistent route, at a consistent altitude, creates a safer environment for all air traffic, the FAA shared. Airport representatives concurred on the need for consistency — particularly, they pointed out, because of the high-performance and military aircraft that regularly utilize Alliance Airport airspace from the east.
ROUTE ADJUSTMENTS
Following a public meeting held with affected residents at Keller Town Hall in early August 2016, Bell announced three changes to their flight patterns aimed at diminishing the number of flights along the Rufe Snow/Hwy. 377 routes. These were to divert:
  • The majority of twin-engine helicopters to Arlington and Fort Worth/Meacham airports;
  • Up to 50 percent of operations during low cloud cover days (when helicopters are forced to fly lower to the ground for visibility) to Arlington and Fort Worth/Meacham airports, when the airports are experiencing lower airplane traffic; and
  • Most evening night-vision goggle training flights along the I-35W/I-820 corridor when Alliance Airport has greatly reduced general aviation traffic
Residents along the flight path are expected to see some additional relief within the next 60-90 days as Bell completes negotiations to conduct some of their grass pad landings at an alternate location to the south of Keller. According to Bell, that could reduce overflights by up to 20 percent.
LONG-TERM SOLUTION
Of most interest to city officials in the room were plans for a permanent solution, a goal of all the affected cities since the new flight path began in 2015. While negotiations are still ongoing, limiting the ability for Bell to disclose sensitive details, the company shared that they hope to announce a long-term solution for those under the flightpath within 90 days.
If all goes according to plan, Bell officials said, residents would see flights along the current routes reduce by half within 12-15 months and disappear completely within two to three years.
COMPLAINTS
Bell’s presentation also recapped complaints that have been entered into their tracking system at www.bellhelicopter.com/noise since the site’s launch during the summer of 2016.
As of the end of February, 2,429 complaints had been logged in the system representing 150 unique households. It is of course unclear, however, how many concerned residents have not filed complaints in the system.
Bell also noted that of those logged complaints, 78 percent (1,889 complaints) have derived from 10 households.
NEXT STEPS
Bell has committed to another public town hall meeting within 90 days. Once that date has been selected, it will be advertised on the city website and social media outlets.
In the meantime, additional information on this issue can be found — and noise complaints can be logged — at www.bellhelicopter.com/noise.
Cyndi Jones McLaughlin

Newspaper Coverage

June 22, 2017

Ft. Worth Star Telegram.

Keller Residents give Bell earful about noisy flights

http://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/northeast-tarrant/article157516759.htmlhttp://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/northeast-tarrant/article157516759.html

May 15, 2017

Ft. Worth Star Telegram

New Bell Helicopter Site May Cut Flights Over Keller

Same article as one on May 11, 2017 (See link below) except addition of final paragraphs.

“We’ve already started that process,” Martin said.  (Ryan Martin)

If all goes as planned Bell hopes to start phasing out pilot training activities at Alliance by late next year.

The new airfield will have three runways, an observation tower and a building for fire equipment, according to city reports.

Sandra Baker   Star Telegram 

May 11, 2017

Bell Helicopter finds airfield site, will reduce flying over Keller

www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/fort-worth/article150013467.html

 

Television News Coverage

July 2, 2017

WFAA Channel 8 News  Todd Unger.

ARE BELL HELICOPTERS CAUSING A NOISE ISSUE?

CLICK ON LINK TO VIEW.

http://www.wfaa.com/news/are-bell-helicopters-causing-an-issue-in-tarrant-county-/453769074

June 21, 2017. 

Keller Residents Protest Bell Helicopter Flights

Click on link below to view Star Telegram coverage June 21, 2017.

http://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/northeast-tarrant/article157516759.html

May 10, 2017

Yesterday was a good day for those of us who are opposed to the intrusion of Bell Helicopters flying their training missions loud and low over our personal properties.

CBS Channel 11 reporter Jason Allen met some concerned citizens at City Hall in Keller, TX to interview us and to discuss our complaints and concerns about Bell Helicopter/Textron.  On the four o’clock news on CBS 11 the piece was run, followed by a shorter segment at five o’clock.

We are hopeful that with this exposure, (which points out exactly the concerns we have regarding safety, noise, and disruption of our previously peaceful neighborhoods), that we can gather much more support from neighbors impacted by Bell Helicopter’s decision to train at Justin and fly from Hurst over many, many homes, businesses, schools, churches, and  nursing homes.

The link to the news article and interview:  CBS11 Interview

 

May 25, 2016

NBC DFW INTERVIEW MAY 25, 2016 WITH NORTH RICHLAND HILLS CITIZENS REGARDING BELL HELICOPTER NOISE AND SAFETY CONCERNS.