Escalon Residents Complain of ‘Low-Flying Planes’

ESCALON -- For Escalon neighbors like Gary Haskins the rustic, quiet beauty of his small city is sometimes blemished by the roars of a plane 1,800 feet up in the air.

“Things are just about to a rattling point, you know, if you’re trying to relax in the backyard, even in the house,” Haskins explained.

He and other residents, like City Councilman Ed Alves, who we spoke to over the phone, have had it with what they call "low-flying planes."

“We have concerns and we haven’t been really given a good explanation and reason for this to happen,” Alves said.

They said it has been like this for about a year. That’s when air cargo support for Amazon began flying in and out of Stockton.

“When you get that low-flying plane coming over it’s distracting and a little nerve wracking to be honest with you,” Haskins said.

“We want Stockton airport to do well. We want Stockton to do well. But we don’t want to be thrown underneath the bus in the process,” Alves said.

Harry Mavrogenes, the airport’s director, said they have met with the city and its residents about their complaints. He said, there’s little they can do.

“Again, that’s all controlled by the FAA. There’s nothing we can do. We’ve been flying that for years without any complaints,” Mavrogenes said.

We spoke with a representative with the FAA who said that their organization has implemented noise abatement, which basically means flights are only permitted between the hours of 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. They are developing a new Stockton arrival route from the south and east that would bypass Escalon throughout the day.

But Haskins said, action needs to be taken now.

“Come on guys, a couple of miles south of here will be easy to do,” he said.

Alves also said if the noise doesn’t stop he will ask all 7,000 residents in Escalon to boycott Amazon and other companies that fly overhead.