At our latest meeting on March 28, we spent the first hour going over the recently-passed ordinances that established landing fees, banned touch-and-go flights and limited hours available for training. The measures are all quite new, so we didn't have much quantitative data to measure their impact on operations. Landing fees came into effect on February 1, and new T&G and hours of training rules became effective on March 8. The number of operations in February were considerably lower than in January, but a variety of factors, including the weather, had to be factored in, making it difficult to draw conclusions about the change.

Subjectively, members were of the opinion that conditions for residents, especially as to noise levels from training flights, have definitely improved with respect to the South runway (29L), but that the higher volume of flights using the North runway (29R) and flight paths with wider turns made conditions still problematic. We need to monitor flight data in the coming months to be able to respond to unsatisfactory conditions.

I briefed the group on the informal discussions with Sling and TAA about a voluntary "Fly Friendly" letter of agreement (LOA) with the City to reduce noise impacts in other ways not mandated by the ordinances. The feedback was positive to continue working toward an LOA, but not to weaken in any way the measures the Council has passed at our urging.

In the second hour of the meeting Sling Pilot Academy made a slide presentation about technical/mechanical changes they are making to their aircraft to lessen noise. They also described the general crowded conditions at all the airports in the region due to increased demand for pilot training. They indicated their support for a "fly friendly" program. A lively question and answer period followed the presentation, making for a useful exchange of differing views on airport issues.

All in all, we need to show some patience but monitor flight operations carefully over the next several months to gauge the effectiveness of the recent changes governing operations. We're still very active!

- Chuck

P.S. Riviera Homeowners' Association will hold a Zoom meeting on Wednesday April 24 at 7pm, at which new officers will be elected. Two anti-COTAR local pilots are seeking seats on the Board, most likely to undermine the strong position of RHA in defending residents against excessive noise from aircraft using Torrance Airport. If you are a member of RHA or eligible to be one with payment of dues, please log in to support RHA leadership and vote for their recommended candidates.

Take Back Torrance Airport

Can Torrance Airport be a better neighbor?

We think so. We are advocating for a Safer, Healthier, Quieter Airport, managed with a higher concern for the Quality of Life for those living under its area of operations. Join us!

Take Back Torrance Airport
Take Back Torrance Airport


Have a front lawn or yard? We've got a sign for you! Show your support for changes at Torrance Airport, and help spread the word. Just let us know where to deliver it. Submit the form below and we'll do the rest.

What’s been happening at Torrance Airport?

Why the sudden increase in noise?

First, let's dispel the notion that COTAR is looking to close Torrance Airport. We are not! The changes we are working towards are to save Torrance Airport, unlike Santa Monica Airport which has been forced to close down. And many of our participants are pilots who call Torrance Airport home base, and know that without change TOA is in danger.

Secondly, this is not an issue of people moving into homes surrounding Torrance Airport (TOA) and now whining about common airport noise. This is not the case at all. Participants in COTAR have lived here for decades and can attest to the recent change in TOA traffic. This is no longer the airport we used to share our neighborhoods with. The nature of activities at TOA have changed in the past couple of years.

Torrance Airport has been overtaken by flight schools, increasing noise and pollution, and threatening the safety of residents on the ground. Flights need to be brought back into line with historical patterns of use.

Flight activity is up over 55% in the past two years compared with the annual average from 2010-2020. (Also, 2023 is on pace to have more operations than 2022.)

Torrance is the only airport experiencing this increase—other airports are flat or down as much as 40%

Flight patterns have changed. The City stopped enforcing a 70-year-old law that made it a noise violation to make early turns over residential areas. The result has been more planes taking off and looping over homes.

All flight traffic at Torrance Airport on November 10, 2022

Local flight traffic at Torrance Airport on November 10, 2022

Most of the increase is “local” traffic from flight schools doing repetitive touch-and-go training loops over residential areas.

Airplane crash at Long Beach Airport during touch and go training, July 10, 2023

More student pilots than ever are training over homes, schools, and parks. Is this safe?

Training in the south pattern conflicts with helicopter arrival/departure routes.

FAA HELICOPTER ROUTE DIAGRAM (with red notations added)

We're not making this up. Something has to change.

COTAR'S Letter to the Torrance City Council

COTAR is taking action right now. Our letter to the Torrance City Council has already been delivered in advance of the Council's July 25th meeting.

July 1, 2023

COTAR'S Public Comment On July 25, 2023 City Council Agenda

The Coalition for Torrance Airport Reform (COTAR) is providing its comments on the staff report for "Item 9A – Airport Mitigation"

July 19, 2023