PORTSMOUTH - Airport Director Paul Brean said airport staff have not received any new information about whether as many as 30 military aircraft - including a number of F-16s - are still scheduled to leave the Portsmouth International Airport at Pease today.
“The information for the noise advisory was the only information we received and the airport will not be provided updates,” Brean said about the military aircraft that evacuated their Air Base down South to avoid Hurricane Michael and landed at Pease. “Flights are always subject to weather and operational logistics so I cannot confirm a departure time.”
Airport staff were told earlier this week when they issued a community noise advisory that the jets were scheduled to fly back South at noon today.
But a Pease representative early Friday afternoon told members of the public waiting at the airport fence that the jets were now planning to depart Saturday morning.
A number of area residents watched the F-16s and other jets fly in from the fence surrounding the airport on Wednesday.
When the jets do end up flying out of Pease, residents around the area should expect to hear it when they leave, Brean said.
The F-16s “need to use their afterburners when they take off,” he said.
Sandra McDonough, operations specialist and community liaison at the airport, cautioned residents about the same likelihood earlier this week.
“Upon departure, the pilot is required to utilize the engines’ afterburners as an operational necessity with this aircraft. Consequently, area residents may perceive a significant noise event as a result of jet aircraft departures,” she said in the community noise alert.