FAA Announces Airport Tower Closures

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Updated: 3/25/2013 8:42 pm
        Friday the FAA announced 149 towers which will close over a four week period starting on april 7th.  Local airports that could see a closed tower in idaho include: Idaho falls, hailey, lewiston, and pocatello.  Summer Joy talked to the Pocatello Airport Manager, David Allen, to get a closer look into this situation and what the impacts could be. 
        
        "We are family. This is a small airport, everyone knows everybody and it hurts when lose someone like this," said David Allen, the Pocatello Airport Manager.

        Not only will the five Pocatello air traffic controllers see an effect, but Allen suggests we could see an impact in flight schools, the process of air tankers fighting a fire would slow down, and have an airport that has a control tower can help attract economic development.

        "There is absolutely no effect on safety or security and the passengers will not detect any change," Allen added.

        Now When airplanes get close to their destination instead of calling into the control tower they will have to identify themselves and announce their location over the radio. Allen adds, "It's not over till it's over," that there is a senator still pushing for funding in this area and there is a current law suit involving this situation. 

        "What I did appeal to the FAA was that closing about 140 airport towers will have a national impact. They didn't want to consider a local impact, but collectively it becomes a national impact. I would really hope that the FAA consider that in their budget determinations, but so far that is not happening," said Allen.   

        If you would like to do something about this or voice your opinion the best thing experts say is to talk to your state representatives. 
        
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debch - 3/28/2013 5:26 PM
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This administration is all about hurting its people, with no sacrifices from them, they even voted themselves a raise last year. Airports in less populace areas are extremely important to local economies. Business that have been established may be greatly affected by these closures. Air safety WILL be impacted, it will be an accident waiting to happen! There is probably a law/policy/FAA procedure these closures would put the aorports in violation of. What about the airlines that service these areas? Will they decide not to go to these airports anymore and the less flights they perform, the less employees they will need. This action will mushroom out of control and instead of the Feds funding ATC towers, it will eventually be supplying Welfare to the unemployed that will result from the loss of jobs.
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