Last year I wrote a letter directed to our politicians regarding the safety issue of helicopters. Nothing has changed. As a witness to the daily swarm of buzzing copters crisscrossing north, south, east, and west on the Hudson River, I don’t see any change or any regulation. In my role of a resident spectator, I witness one helicopter after the other with maybe a one or two minute gap between them competing with jets, dirigibles and small private planes from Edgewater to Jersey City.
This year I’m writing a similar letter hoping to grasp the attention of environmentalists. While you work hard for clean air, clean rivers, protection of plants and foliage, I can’t think of a worse pollutant than constant loud noise. The beautiful redevelopment of New Jersey’s Hudson Riverfront “Gold” Coast has been devalued to “tin” by helicopter traffic.
Parks are supposed to provide respite from inner city life but along the Hudson nothing could be further from the truth. Outdoor activities such as sporting events, picnics, outdoor movies, and musical concerts are ruined by the constant rumbling in the skies. Last month at an outdoor concert in Weehawken, the performer stopped to say he couldn’t compete with the noise above. Spectators at sporting events can’t hear a referee or umpire making their calls. Saddest of all, are couples who opt for an outdoor wedding and have to compete with the din while saying their vows. It is no wonder that so many people are hooked up to headsets while walking, bike riding or watching games.
As a waterfront resident, I’m happy for cloudy, rainy days because the noise stops! Why should this be? On nice days I can’t sit on my terrace or open the sliding terrace doors. In the age of staunch environmental activism it is hard to imagine that this pollutant has not been addressed. Then again the issue of safety has not been addressed. The 9 lives that were lost last summer due to a mid air collision have quickly been forgotten. This fatality took place over a Hoboken Park while a soccer game was in progress.
New York runs the helicopter trade in this area. They make lots of money from it. Why should we bear this burden in New Jersey? Do we get any money from this? Maybe a New Jersey politician/environmentalist can come forward to lend some support and answer some questions. Senator Menendez (NJ) refuses to address this topic while Senator Schumer (NY) works hard for his constituents regarding this matter.
Perhaps this letter could stir some new hope? If not, perhaps in next year’s letter I could call on Tony Soprano to get something done.