Thank You Everyone For the Protest against Surf Air On June 17!

Post date: Jun 18, 2017 4:54:16 AM

A BIG thank you to all of the Sunnyvale residents who participated in the Surf Air protest at San Carlos Airport on June 17.

More than 80 residents of Sunnyvale, Cupertino, and San Mateo County gathered at the San Carlos Airport on Saturday morning (June 17, 2017) to protest the rapid increase in Surf Air flights arriving and departing from that airport.  SurfAir flies very noisy turbo prop planes (the Swiss-made PC-12), and airplanes approaching the San Carlos airport are at low altitude (<3000ft), even as far out as Sunnyvale.  This combination of frequent, loud, low Surf Air flights has resulted in a sky-rocketing of complaints to the San Carlos airport.

Demonstrators gathered holding signs that included the phrases "No Fair! No More Surf Air",  "Stop Dumping On Sunnyvale",  and “Sunnyvale Says Surf Air Must Go!”. 

Approximately 40 Sunnyvale & Cupertino residents and another 40 San Mateo County residents voiced their discontent and solidarity during the protest – Chanting phrases like “No More Surf Air” and “Go Away Surf Air”.  Many of the Sunnyvale and Cupertino protesters wore orange as a symbol of unity and solidarity against the issues associated with Surf Air at the San Carlos Airport.

San Mateo County residents and Sunnyvale/Cupertino residents do have common ground on many Surf Air and San Carlos Airport issues. Sunnyvale and San Mateo county residents both agree that commercial airlines, such as Surf Air, have no place at small local airports like the San Carlos Airport.  Noise, number of flights, curfews, and other issues affect large parts of the Bay Area and many places other than just San Mateo County where the airport is located.  These residents also agree in the critical need and in their support for the implementation of a curfew at the San Carlos Airport.

There is clear contention between San Mateo County residents and Sunnyvale residents regarding the Bayside Visual Approach (BVA), which has transferred the Surf Air flight path (and airplane noise) from the peninsula residents to Sunnyvale residents – Effectively transferring airplane noise from one community to another.  It is critical that decisions on flight path, noise, and number of flights must take a regional approach – the impact goes far beyond San Mateo County near the San Carlos Airport.

A Sunnyvale resident present at the protest commented:  “This new flight path over Sunnyvale is an example of the rich San Mateo county residents in communities like Atherton, Palo Alto, and Menlo Park pushing the problems outside their county.  This should not be allowed.”

We hope that Sunnyvale’s strong attendance at the protest will signal to Surf Air and San Mateo County officials that Sunnyvale residents will not rest until this issue is addressed with consideration for Sunnyvale, Cupertino, and other impacted residents.  Sunnyvale City Officials received absolutely no notice when the initial BVA (Bay Visual Approach) proposal was considered for San Mateo County.  Despite the distance and time commitment for Sunnyvale residents to attend the protest, they turned out in force with creative signs, slogans, and even sidewalk protest art!!  Sunnyvale and Cupertino should not be disregarded in the desire to find an effective solution for all impacted communities.