Increase in Aircraft Noise at SMF

My office has received several calls and emails recently about an increase in aircraft noise from residents who, like me, live near the Sacramento International Airport. What we’ve learned is there are a number of reasons for the increase in noise.

First, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) implemented Next Gen flight procedures which have concentrated flights in some areas. The “What is NextGen?” video on the FAA’s NextGen website illustrates how several flight tracks covering a broad geographic area are concentrated along one or two RNAV flight paths as a result of the NextGen process. There are a few other reasons for greater overflight of Westlake. Flights at the airport are increasing after a long recession and a few carriers have moved to Terminal A which means they use the East Runway which is closer to Westlake. Recent winds from the south occurring at night have temporarily meant that the airport’s nighttime preferential runway use program which directs flights to the north cannot be used.

Visit Sacramento International Airports’ webpage for Frequently Asked Questions or file an aircraft noise comment.  You can also email the airport at


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