Followup: Last night’s airplane route/noise mystery solved!

Mystery solved, regarding the unusual flight pattern – and noise – that many heard over north West Seattle last night (as reported here); we contacted Sea-Tac Airport‘s media officer Perry Cooper, who researched it and, along with the airport’s noise officer, just called back with what they found out: A quirk in the weather caused Sea-Tac and Boeing Field to be in opposite flows; almost always, they are landing/taking off in the same “flow,” according to Cooper, but a “weird wind” last night caused Sea-Tac to be in south flow, Boeing Field to be in north flow, “so in order to make sure there would not be any conflicts, the jets taking off from Boeing Field were being routed (over) West Seattle.” So unless the wind quirk happens again, it was a one-time thing.

10 Replies to "Followup: Last night's airplane route/noise mystery solved!"

  • ME May 17, 2012 (3:26 pm)

    Good to know! I thought for sure they were going to land in the parking lot!

  • RaindogPhoto May 17, 2012 (3:29 pm)

    WSB, you are so awesome! I knew you’d have an answer for us. Thanks!

  • newnative May 17, 2012 (4:19 pm)

    Aha! My Boeing friend was right.

  • kumalavula May 17, 2012 (4:21 pm)

    i heard it and wondered if I should expect to see an emergency landing!

  • Grace May 17, 2012 (4:24 pm)

    Yes, thanks for being so thorough! We thought it might have had to do with the CEO Summit because some looked like private jets, but a weird wind pattern makes more sense. (sort of :)

  • jay May 17, 2012 (5:02 pm)

    I was sure this had happened before and remembered reading about it on the blog. Sure enough….

    • WSB May 17, 2012 (5:11 pm)

      Thanks, Jay! I should have searched our own site for possible explanations :) although I still wouldn’t have been able to verify the weird pattern till talking to somebody official today … Don’t have the cool tangled graphic this time, though … TR

  • JA May 17, 2012 (5:44 pm)

    This is why I adore the West Seattle Blog. You just couldn’t find information like this anywhere else! Keep up the good work!

  • Pegglish May 17, 2012 (8:30 pm)

    Usually only the smaller prop planes fly over Arbor Heights, in the last few weeks I have noticed the big jets flying over my house too. Same explanation ?

    • WSB May 17, 2012 (8:53 pm)

      This was a relatively short-lived weather phenomenon, so, no.

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