The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Reject seaplane base at Cathlamet

 

December 22, 2022



To The Eagle:

We are concerned Cathlamet residents who love this city we call home.

But while I am an aviation enthusiast myself (but not a pilot), my family and I wanted to urge our fellow citizens to contact and petition the county commissioners to reject all proposals for a seaplane hanger, a seaplane ramp, or a seaplane base in any location near Cathlamet or on the Cathlamet channel.

Last week, we explored the potential noise impact. This week:

Impact 2: The false promise of economic impact.

The reality is that the impact on local businesses would be small because a big impact means lots of plane flights.

A typical non-commercial seaplane only holds 2-6 people: barely a minivan. How many planes and flights each day will it take to generate any meaningful impact for our local businesses?

Impact 3 - The negative impact on Sport Fishing and Marine Access - Our pride and our heritage: we are a proud fisherman’s city.

A Cessna Caravan Seaplane has a wing span of 52 feet! Picture that aircraft, exiting a 1500 sq ft hanger, and taxiing loudly past our marina while taking up more than six times the width of a typical sport fishing boat in the slough.

Even the 4-person Cessna 195 has a 36’ wingspan: that's wider than 4 boats side by side in the slough!

They will be a huge hazard and annoyance to our sport fishing and watersports community.

Impact 4 - We are opening Pandora’s Box: Once we have one seaplane hanger, how can we say no to additional requests for more hangers and planes, outside of literally having no space on the slough to house them? More hangers = more traffic = more noise = more safety risks.

My 350 words are up; Part 3 next week.

In the meantime, if these reasons make sense to you, email your county commissioners and encourage them to vote no on any proposal for a seaplane hanger or base in or near our county! Your voice matters!

Wilkie Sargent

Cathlamet

 

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