Cathedral Rock at Crescent Moon Park

Jet Fuel Dumping Over Sedona, Noise Beyond Legal Limits and Extreme Lead Levels.


 Sedona, Arizona, this is the site of illegal and lethal, low altitude jet fuel dumping  by private and charter jets, hundreds of feet above our neighborhood and Oak Creek! This is causing cancer, high blood pressure, central nervous system and axon damage and killing the people who live here; I call this murder because the pilots know what they are doing is deadly to those of us directly below them; everyone knows jet fuel was never meant to be inhaled. These jets arrive with too much fuel to either take off from our short runway or to land. Many people claim business class jets cannot fuel dump, that is completely untrue according to a Gulfstream pilot and the below documentation. Gulfstream jets requiring 7,800 feet of runway to take off routinely land and take off in Sedona on only 5,100 feet of runway.  Meanwhile we can smell jet fuel in our yard when some jets land, our blood is full of jet fuel and we have come close to dying on many occasions from acute jet fuel poisoning.  My neighbor is now on an oxygen tank, another neighbor had a detached retina and went blind at age 58 and now Robert is having white flashes of light behind his eyes which is the first indicator of detached retinas; benzene causes detached retinas.

The Sedona Airport meet the Day Night Noise Level Maximum back in 1997 and the Airport operations have dramatically increased here since 1997.  The Sedona Airport Master Plan calls this area “mostly forest land.”  We are well beyond the legal Day Night Noise Level for the Sedona area and this noise extends into all parts of town, the US Forest and Wilderness.

People are now forced to have their weddings inside the town of Sedona to avoid the airport noise because the scenic areas in the US Forest, such as Crescent Moon Park and Schnebly Hill Rd. are over run by incessant airplane and helicopter noise.  Helicopter and bi-plane tours operate over our homes, schools, churches and park lands all day long and timeshare guests receive free helicopter rides around beautiful Cathedral Rock.  Our real estate values are destroyed by airport noise, and many who can afford to leave their expensive homes abandon them and list them for millions less than they built them for in order to escape the noise.  The noise starts at 6:00 am and wakes us up out of bed.  We must keep our windows closed but that does little good because the house was designed to take in the Red Rock views and so has large glass windows.  There is no place left to recreate in the Sedona area without being continually assaulted by aircraft noise, some of my friend wear ear plugs when they go hiking here!

 It seems hard to believe that a place as beautiful and special as Sedona is allowed to be an airport and overrun by aircraft to the detriment of everyone else here.  Sedona is no different than Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon and needs immediate protection from this aircraft assault.  The world famous Cathedral Rock is no longer a place of solitude but instead is in the airport flight path!

No government agency has ever done a NEPA study on the impacts of the airport on Sedona and the airport was grandfathered in; no one has ever looked at the geography and how that holds the pollution in the basins, canyons and washes here with no where to evacuate to!

Gulfstream G200 – FUEL SYSTEM PDF 
Fuel system is limited to use of approved fuels (see LIMITATIONS).
It is comprised of four major sub-systems and associated controls:
fuel storage, fuel distribution, fuel jettison and fuel indicating systems.  G150 PDF Explaining Fuel Jettison Capability

Despite the fact that some business class jets can dump jet fuel, the FAA and pilots will vehemently deny it; I know I have been lied to repeatedly.  How did my blood get full of jet fuel if there is no jet fuel dumping?  Why can I smell jet fuel when jets come in to land?  I never smell jet fuel at an int’l airport.

The density altitude in the summer affects aircraft performance and jets need to lose more weight the hotter it gets, so they dump even more jet fuel upon us!  From the pilot’s point of view, an increase in density altitude results in:
1. Increased takeoff distance.  (We cannot make the Sedona runway long enough to accommodate all of the types of jets that land here.)
2. Reduced rate of climb.  (Jets take off out of here with such force, that they unleash an unholy amount of exhaust and particulate matter directly upon on neighborhood, which is then trapped in our tight little valley.)
3. Increased true airspeed on approach and landing (same IAS).
4. Increased landing roll distance.

At airports of higher elevations, such as those in the Western United States, high temperatures sometimes have such an effect on density altitude that safe operations are impossible. In such conditions, operations between mid-morning and mid-afternoon can become extremely hazardous. Even at lower elevations, aircraft performance can become marginal and it may be necessary to reduce aircraft gross weight for safe take off operations.  When performance is in question it is prudent to schedule operations during the cool hours of the day. If you want to know more about density altitude you can read about it here density altitude


A fuel jettison system is required for transport category and general aviation aircraft if the maximum takeoff weight exceeds the maximum landing weight under FAA FAR part 25, section 1001. The maximum takeoff and landing weights are design specifications and may be found in the Aircraft Type Certificate data sheets. 

A fuel jettison system must be able to jettison enough fuel within 10 minutes for general aviation, or 15 minutes for transport category aircraft, to meet the requirements of the specifications and Federal Air Regulations. It must be operable under the conditions encountered during all operations of the aircraft.

 The fuel jettisoning system is usually divided into two separate, independent systems, one for each wing, so that lateral stability can be maintained by jettisoning fuel from the “heavy” wing if it is necessary to do so. Normally, if an unbalanced fuel load exists, fuel will be used from the “heavy” wing by supplying fuel to engines on the opposite wing. The system consists of lines, valves, dump chutes and chute operating mechanisms. Each wing contains either a fixed or an extendable dump chute depending upon system design. In either case the fuel must discharge clear of the airplane.

Fuel dumping is an emergency procedure to grant the safety of the passengers. Modern aircraft design and manufacturing allows more and more aircraft to land at maximum take-off weight. Only long range aircraft like B-747, B-767, B-777, MD-11, A-330, A-340 or A-380 can dump fuel. As an exception, there are some small business jets which use the fuel mass for weight and balance and might dump fuel in case of flight abortion or in an illegal instance when they are too heavy to take back off a short runway.   Since jets dump jet fuel in Sedona, they must be doing it over other towns in similar situations and operating conditions?  Our airport cannot be so unique?  Perhaps small airports all over America need to be closed for the health and safety of those who live near them. The economic burden of these small airports falls upon those living near the airport as they struggle under the burden of cancer, heart disease, respiratory distress and other health problems.  All jet aircraft use Halon, a deadly, ozone-depleting chemical in their engines.  Children, the elderly, those with compromised immune systems, non excretors of heavy metals and those with impaired methylation are at a higher risk.

May 17th, 2012, Sedona, Arizona, the morning after a jet fuel dump over my home. My blood levels are this high despite being inside my home when the dumping occurred! My blood pressure elevated to 171/122 after breathing the jet fuel, by midnight I was very ill.   It took three days for my blood pressure to go back to my normal 118/68.  Diesel and Jet fuel cause cancer; do you think it is worse when jet fuel is raw, aerosol-ed and inhaled? Any questions on why we have young people here dying from rare forms of cancer?

How did I figure out the jets are dumping jet fuel on us in Sedona?  Why didn’t anyone else figure it out? Due to the unique position of my home sitting on a hill directly in the flight path, and having large glass windows, I see and hear every plane and jet.  I am home all day long and much closer to the bottom of the jets as they fly over my roof, when they dump jet fuel I can smell it.  Most of my neighbors are at a lower altitude, have trees blocking their views and do see or hear the aircraft very well.  During busy jet days which always involve jet fuel dumping, the town has a large surge of healthy people who have high blood pressure and rapid pulse rates who end up at the doctor’s offices in town; I counted 32 jets and 500 airplanes over my roof in one day from 8 am to 6 pm.  After each jet fuel dump not only did we get sick, my Persian cat would lose her bowels and bladder all over the house.  On January 4th, 2013, my beloved cat died from organ failure with a liver the size of a football. It took the airport 6 years to kill Amanda and 4 years to kill my cat.

“The Sedona Airport is located in a community that is sensitive to potential adverse impacts to the surrounding environment. The updated Master Plan for the Sedona Airport contains plans for the expansion of the airport facilities in response to projected demands from the general aviation and corporate aviation communities that currently utilize the airport. Elements of the plan which are, or may become the subjects of controversy for Sedona and Yavapai County may require the preparation of Environmental Impact Statements which present alternatives and mitigation plans for development, which may be determined to have adverse environmental impacts.”

The Sedona Airport Master Plan, Chapter 6 Environmental Evaluation- page 10 of 10. Section 6.3.

With air traffic projected to triple in the next decade, noise and emissions are becoming bigger problems around airports and regulations on carbon emissions are proliferating.  Now is the perfect time to remove the ill conceived Sedona airport away from our homes, natural monuments, federal park-lands and schools; Sedona’s air and soundscapes cannot sustain more air traffic inside people’s neighborhoods and our US Forest.  The FOREST is FOR EVERYONE not just aircraft! 

Why save another piece of Paradise?  All the rest have been destroyed!

Future Sedona Airport terminal to handle the Sedona Airport’s goal of

279,000 air events per year, with baggage handling and a pilots lounge!  The noise here is already unbearable for many people,

more air traffic will make Sedona unbearable for everyone, the pollution will be so bad that no one will be able to safely live here.

Sign Our Petition - Close Sedona AirportI built this webpage to bring awareness to the plight of the people living here and to save lives from jet fuel and lead poisoning.  Three of my neighbors have died from liver and pancreatic cancer in March and April of 2012.   One neighbor was a young lady aged 21 and she died from a rare form of liver cancer called Chonagiocarcinoma.  There are three teenagers with cancer at our local high school all diagnosed in the last two months, one girl has ovarian cancer at age 15!  I have experienced liver pain and liver spasms, laid in bed with  my central nervous system shaking all night. I also have high blood pressure  and a racing pulse when jets are flying over my roof and dumping or losing jet fuel.   I and some of my neighbors have various ill health effects from living under a jetport in one of the most beautiful towns in the world; we smell jet exhaust in our homes and yards, sometimes all night long. Why are we all so sick? It is not simply toxic exhaust that has no where to go,  jets are dumping 1,000 to 1,200 gallons of raw jet fuel right over our roof!  My blood is full of high levels of raw jet fuel!  Pilots and the airport manager argue that “jet fuel is safe because it is just diesel and they have been exposed to jet fuel and it never bothered the;” this is a ludicrous and untrue argument.  Does the below list seem like a healthy thing to breath?  It is illegal to dump jet fuel below 5,000 feet above the ground. Diesel fuel has recently been officially declared carcinogenic by the EPA.  BTEXs are well known deadly carcinogens, there is no way to debate that it is safe to live with these BTEXs in extremely high concentrations. There is no public disclosure that ones blood will be full of BTEXs living here.  If the airport is so wonderful the FAA should buy all our homes and let the airport have this area, just turn Sedona into an industrial park.

What are we breathing in our airspace?

A partial list of the constituents of jet fuel are:

Freon 11; Freon 12; Methyl Bromide; Dichloromethane; cis-l,2-Dichloroethylene; 1,1,1-Trichloroethane; Carbon Tetrachloride; Benzene; Trichloroethylene; Toluene; Tetrachloroethene; Ethylbenzene; m,p-Xylene; o-Xylene; Styrene; 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene; 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene; o-Dichlorobenzene; Formaldehyde; Acetaldehyde; Acrolein; Acetone; Propinaldehyde; Crotonaldehyde; Isobutylaldehyde; Methyl Ethyl Ketone; Benzaldehyde; Veraldehyde; Hexanaldehyde; Ethyl Alcohol; Acetone; Isopropyl Alcohol; Methyl Ethyl Ketone; Butane; Isopentane; Pentane; Hexane; Butyl Alcohol; Methyl Isobutyl Ketone; n,n-Dimethyl Acetamide; Dimethyl Disulfide; m-Cresol; 4-Ethyl Toulene; n- Heptaldehyde; Octanal; 1,4-Dioxane; Methyl Phenyl Ketone; Vinyl Acetate; Heptane; Phenol; Octane; Anthracene; Dimethylnapthalene(isomers); Flouranthene; 1-methylnaphthalene; 2-methylnaphthalene; Naphthalene; Phenanthrene; Pyrene; Benzo(a)pyrene; 1-nitropyrene; 1,8-dinitropyrene; 1,3-Butadiene; sulfites; nitrites; nitrogen oxide; nitrogen monoxide; nitrogen dioxide; nitrogen trioxide; nitric acid; sulfur oxides; sulfur dioxide; sulfuric acid; urea; ammonia; carbon monoxide; ozone; particulate matter (PM10, PM2.5); and finally this compound; 3-nitrobenzanthrone.  These petro-chemicals are emitted in such high quantities that we can smell them in our yard and home.  The threshold for toxicity is far below the level of being able to detect these chemicals by odor.  The jetport was installed in Sedona in 2006, prior to that we had a small local airport; I think  jetports do not belong inside small towns.

 Chronic effects of some of the constituents in jet fuel (benzene, toluene, xylene, naphthalenes, alkyl benzenes, and various alkyl PAHs) include changes in the liver and harmful effects on the kidneys, heart, lungs, nervous system and cancer.  Petroleum-derived fuels and fuel oils are com­plex mixtures of hydrocarbons. Inhalation and percutaneous absorption are the primary routes of uptake into the peripheral blood. [1] Following absorption, organic solvents undergo biotrans­formation (which occurs primarily in the liver), or they accumulate in lipid-rich tissues such as those of the nervous system. [2] Metabolism in the liver results in the detoxification of the organic solvent through formation of water­soluble compounds that are excreted through urine or bile. 

I have asked for help from the AZDEQ, EPA, the City, Yavapai County, Congressman Gosar and the airport; Congressman Gosar who is part of the General Aviation Caucus in Congress.  How many more people have to die?  How many more children need to have lead poisoning?  All so a few people can fly over our houses and park land?  Do you really think our area can handle an unlimited amount of air traffic?  I have counted 32 jets and 500 airplanes fly over my roof in one day in May, 2011.  The FBI came to my house on June 25th, 2012 to investigate the jet fuel dumping. On Thursday, June 28th the Sedona Airport manager left his job.  He renews his contract every five years in January, the last renewal was January, 2012 for five additional years.

Thousands of people complain about the Sedona Airport.  Hundreds of people called Congressman Gosar’s office; people are also calling and writing the FAA, the Sedona Airport Authority, and the Sedona City Council.  Congressman Gosar’s aide meet with 60 people from Sedona last year about the Sedona Airport but he did nothing to help us

An updated Sedona Airport Master Plan and air quality monitoring stations in areas beneath the flight path would be a first step to addressing the problems Sedona citizens and visitors experience due to aircraft, including but not limited to noise, air pollution, negative health impacts, lack of peaceful enjoyment of public land and private property, decreased property values; these problems will only get worse as air traffic increases.  The town and our neighborhoods were here before the two airplanes and their illegal air strip that has become the Sedona Airport.

After decades of protesting the existence of an airport and air tours in and around Sedona, the time is past for the air traffic to be relocated to another area.   The excessive aircraft noise in Sedona results in annoyance, inconvenience and interference with the uses and enjoyment of private property, US Forest Land and Wilderness and adversely affects wildlife, the severity of which differs depending on what area of Sedona one is located in.  Aircraft noise is unnatural sound that the human body cannot adapt to, causing the fight or flight mechanism to stay triggered.  Aircraft noise is particularly undesirable and damaging in areas where it interferes with our normal activities associated with the area’s use; including residential, educational, health, religious structures and sites, parks, recreation areas, Wilderness areas, wildlife refuges, and cultural and historic sites where a quiet setting is generally recognized feature or attribute.

Unfortunately the worst impacts to Sedona are in the nicest areas, including the Crescent Moon Recreation area which is  a riparian, historic site of great natural beauty and fame and also home to a community garden and residential neighborhoods.  Most of the air traffic in and out of Sedona traverses past Cathedral Rock, the icon of the state of Arizona.  Due to the close proximity of the airport to Cathedral Rock there is no way for the aircraft to avoid flying  in the vicinity of the Crescent Moon Recreation area, federally owned and managed US Forest Land.  Oak Creek is a protected waterway which connects to the Wild and Scenic Verde River.  The airport uses deicing agents on the runway and airplanes as all airports must, but there is no collection for the deicing agents and the poison as unfettered to wash down Carol Canyon and on to Oak Creek and The Wild and Scenic Verde River.

Crescent Moon Park Recreation Area on the bank of Oak Creek.  Helicopter Flying Past Cathedral Rock

Should this be an airport?  Imagine 35,000 to 80,000 flights per year over this valley.

                                                                      The average number of daily operations at the airport  in 2013 was down to 96 per day but is now back up with good weather.                                                                                                                                        During the weekend of October  18-20th, 2013 there were no quiet moments at any time at my home from early in the morning to sunset. We endure several hundred aircraft per day, plus helicopters and 5-10 jets.   Much of the air traffic both takes off and lands over our home using this side of the runway for all operations because the people in town call and complaint when they have air traffic over their homes and there are more people on that end of the runway.

There are less than a dozen quiet places in the lower 48 states.

Many people want Sedona and the surrounding U.S. Forest land and Wilderness to be a No Fly Zone. Why? Because silence is a precious commodity and noise causes negative environmental and health impacts for the animals and people who live and visit here.  The location of the Sedona Airport pollutes the atmosphere in Sedona forest lands and neighborhoods with between .33 and .75 tons of lead per year and jets leave behind deadly exhaust that collects in our neighborhoods with no way for the pollution to be evacuated due to the land formation in Sedona being  a basin with low wind.  Sedona has worse air quality than half of the United States, our overall air quality rating on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the best is 4.8.  EPA statistics are located on   All cities with an airport have a cloud of lead over them, the closer one is to the airport the higher the lead concentration. 

People come from all over the world for a nature and wilderness experience in our beautiful town and usually get aircraft noise, traffic and air pollution.  Sedona is a town of 11,000 people, yet receives millions of visitors by car and tour bus.  This small geographic area is bombarded with aircraft noise in a way that no other small town suffers under.  While the business owners at the airport tell us, “we can’t live without the airport,” in actuality we have Red Rocks and people come here for the Red Rocks, not for the noise or the airport less than 1% use the airport.  While these airport business owners promulgate how indispensable and valuable their businesses on the airport mesa are to our town, they pay no sales tax or property taxes to the city or county and lease the entire mesa for $1.00 per year!

Most general aviation aircraft are powered by piston engines, which are fueled by aviation gasoline (AvGas). Aviation gasoline has a much higher volatility than jet fuel and the fuel tanks are vented to the atmosphere resulting in significant HC evaporation. Evaporative emissions are associated with refueling, pre-flight safety procedures, and fuel venting due to diurnal temperature changes. The EPA methodology for calculating refueling losses is provided in an EPA Office of Air and Radiation memorandum from Mary Manners to Susan Willis dated October 20, 1996; Subject: Revised Methodology for Calculating the Refueling Losses for
General Aviation Aircraft.  People in west Sedona live all around the mesa and breathe the emissions from jets, planes, helicopters and fuel tanks.  The exhaust and vapors from the airport drifts in all directions off the mesa into people’s homes.

The City of Sedona and Yavapai County do not have noise ordinances that regulate aircraft noise at this time.   A noise ordinance requiring helicopters to fly with noise dampening equipment over the city and Amendment 12 areas is a reasonable request and the implementation of such would go a long way to easing the lack of peaceful enjoyment many homeowners now suffer under.  The Sedona City Council should implement a noise ordinance immediately, they owe this to the homeowners who pay hefty property taxes and lack peaceful enjoyment of their homes and land!

Under FAA regulations air craft are advised to take off as high and as quickly as possible to get away from homes, schools, churches, parks, and hospitals but in Sedona we live under the opposite conditions.  Instead of aircraft leaving the Sedona area, they fly around and look down on our town and red rocks. These aircraft fly by Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock and other natural landscape monuments, over and through our town, above hospitals, churches, schools, neighborhoods, our land where we go to recreate and our wilderness; disturbing not only humans but wildlife as well.

Geographic Map of Sedona Arizona

What used to be the “Most Beautiful Place in America” is now one of the noisiest and over commercialized small towns in America.

Instead of being a quiet, meditative atmosphere, Sedona has become a loud air circus; there are barely any areas to escape the noise. The decibels levels in my bedroom from overhead aircraft are between 55-100 db. The despite the lenient DNL levels allowed by the FAA, the ongoing noise in some parts of Sedona is in excess of levels allowed by the FAA.

Tourists come from all over the world to see Cathedral Rock and visit the Crescent Moon Recreation area on the banks of Oak Creek.  On a busy day it is so loud at Crescent  Moon that you cannot hear the person next to you speak and there is no sound of wildlife or nature, just an endless barrage of helicopters, bi-planes and small aircraft.  The Cathedral Rock area is being over used by one use group – the aircraft, to the detriment of the majority of those recreating on the land.  One aircraft ruins the experience for thousands below it, helicopters routinely fly around and between the Cathedral Rock spires where hikers are climbing on the rocks.

In order to protect our town from further damage from aircraft we must stop the insanity now!

What can we do to return Sedona to a quieter and cleaner place to be enjoyed by all?
Read our petition page to see how you can help.

Together we can solve the problems in Sedona and make it a better place to live and visit!

Links page:

1. Pederen LM. Biological studies in human expo­sure to and poisoning with organic solvents. Pharmacol Toxicol 1987;3:1-38.  Back to cited text no. 6      
2. Bergman K. Application and results of whole­body autoradiography in distribution studies of organic solvents. Crit Rev Toxicol 1983;12:59­-118.  Back to cited text no. 7  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]  

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