Navy Holds Public Forum On New 'Crash Zones'

Navy Released New Report Showing New Accident Potential Zones For Naval Air Station North Island, Airfield In Imperial Beach

The Navy held the first of two public forums on Wednesday after releasing a new study on flight operations in and around Coronado and Imperial Beach.

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In Coronado, new aircraft and new approaches to the runway at North Island caused the Navy to reevaluate potential zones for accidents.

A couple of homes were in a potential danger zone when the study was last conducted in 1984. The zone now stretches from Sunset Park to the Hotel Del Coronado.

"We don't fly a straight in route to runway 29 anymore," said Capt. Yancy Lindsey, the commanding officer of Naval Base Coronado. "We try and minimize the impact so we approach over the water, and we want to make sure the public is aware of the potential of a mishap."

To date, there have been seven minor mishaps at North Island. All occurred inside the base. For Imperial Beach residents, their concern is new helicopters and more of them coming to train.

"Like most of us who live here, noise is a concern and I came to the forum to see how the Navy plans to minimize it as much as possible," said Chris Kyburg, who has lived in the area for 30 years.

He learned that more aircraft are coming but the routes they follow, that is, away from populated areas, will not change.

Residents of Coronado will have a chance to ask the Navy about the study on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the public library.

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