Planes coming in and out of Heathrow fly at varying heights at the same geographical position. BA, the biggest user, flies aircraft considerably lower than many other airlines. This causes life changing extra noise for residents underneath. The difference in noise under departing planes could be as much as 15 decibels according to the results from xPlane and the noise table provided by NATS.
Low flying around Heathrow is something on which we have been trying to get Heathrow to take action for over 6 years now. We wrote about this back in June 2016
Heathrow does not operate an ICAO noise abatement procedure for departures set out in the ICAO guidance. Notwithstanding, the Aeronautical Information Publication provides that aircraft shall at all times be operated in a manner which is calculated to cause the least disturbance practicable in areas surrounding the aerodrome. This is not being followed to the considerable detriment of communities surrounding Heathrow (which includes areas at least 20 miles away). The communities consider that operating the ICAO NADP1 procedure in accordance with ICAO guidance up to 4,500’ on departure and continuous descents upon arrival would a give very substantial noise reduction, and wish for these measures to be introduced at the earliest opportunity.
For those under arrivals flight paths, heights are considerably lower than stated by Heathrow – again causing more noise and suffering than is necessary.
The communities surrounding Heathrow have had the benefit of advice given to them by aviation experts To70. Unfortunately just after publication of their departure profile report, their funding was withdrawn by Heathrow. It is vital that the communities surrounding Heathrow have access to independent expert advice on the effects of aircraft operations. If Heathrow is truly going to build back better (as it said that it intended to – see this link), then it has got to adopt proper noise abatement procedures and exert some discipline on its customers, mainly BA which is one of the worst offenders for low flying.