Effects of aircraft overflights on wilderness recreationists

Sanford Fidell, Laura Silvati, Richard Howe, Karl S. Pearsons, Barbara Tabachnick, Richard Knopf, James Gramann, Thomas Buchanan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


On-site and telephone opinion surveys were conducted to assess outdoor recreationists' annoyance with aircraft overflights of wilderness areas. Although current technology for measuring noise exposure does not yet permit accurate and cost-effective estimates of dosage-response relationships in outdoor recreational settings, it was nonetheless possible to construct a rough relationship between estimated aircraft noise exposure and annoyance from the data of the on-site study. In the second survey, telephone interviews were administered to another sample of outdoor recreationists within 2 weeks of their return from visits to 12 wilderness areas. The prevalence of aircraft noise-induced annoyance (in any degree) among respondents in all wilderness areas ranged from 5% to 32%. The prevalence of a consequential degree of aircraft noise-induced annoyance among respondents was less than 5% in all wilderness areas combined. Noise-induced annoyance proved to be a more direct measure of the effects of aircraft overflights on recreationists than more global measures such as visit satisfaction or intent to revisit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2909-2918
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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