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Late Night Noise Limitation Program

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aircraft taking off at night at sea-tac airport

About the late night noise limitation program

The Late Night Noise Limitation Program is a new, voluntary Port of Seattle program designed to reduce late night noise at SEA Airport by encouraging air carriers to fly during less noise-sensitive hours or transition to quieter aircraft.  The program was developed to increase air carrier awareness of the impact of aircraft noise on local communities.  

  • Focuses on the hours of 12:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. to help alleviate late night aircraft noise within the community
  • Captures noise levels for any take-offs and landings between these hours using four close-in airport noise monitors; noise level data collection began July 1, 2019
  • Reports out any exceedances of noise thresholds to the public and air carriers on a quarterly basis
  • Beginning in 2020, a penalty score will be assigned as part of the Port’s Fly Quiet Incentive Program if an operation exceeds an established noise threshold
  • Single Event Noise Exposure Level (SEL) is the metric the program uses to measure aircraft noise at the four monitors. SEL is measured in decibels and represents the total sound energy from an aircraft operation at a given location.

Noise monitors

The Late Night Noise Limitation Program is an outcome of the Sea-Tac Stakeholder Advisory Round Table (StART).  StART, formed in 2018, brings together the Port, FAA, air carriers, and local airport communities to support collaborative dialogue on airport-related issues and to identify practical solutions to reduce the airport’s impacts on local communities.

location of noise monitors used for late night noise limitations program
Noise Monitors and Noise Thresholds used for Late Night Noise Limitation Program

The four close-in monitors used to capture noise are monitors 12 and 13 north of the runways and18 and 19 south of the runways.

To expand the Noise Monitor Map and view the established noise threshold at each monitor, please click the map. Learn more about the Port's Aircraft Noise Monitor System.

For any questions, comments or concerns regarding Airport Noise, please contact the Airport Noise Programs Office by phone at 1 (800) 826-1447, (206) 787-5393 or by contacting us using our comment form.

4th quarter, 2021 late night noise limitation program report

All airlines with late night operations that exceeded noise thresholds during the quarter are displayed below along with their late night total operations and the exceedance percentage of their late night total operations. They are ranked from the most exceedances to the fewest.  For a more detailed look at the specific operations that exceeded thresholds along with a list of all airlines that operated during these hours, please view Full Report.

Download Full Report

Airlines with exceedances during late night hours in the 4th quarter, 2021

Airline Name


Total Late Night Operations

Total Number of Exceedances

Percent of Exceeding Operations

FedEx Express CRG 88 55 63%
ATI (Amazon Prime Air) CRG 482 54 11%
China Airlines Cargo CRG 49 35 71%
China Cargo Airlines CRG 53 24 45%
Delta Air Lines PAX 410 17 4%
Asiana Airlines Cargo CRG 20 16 80%
Korean Air Cargo CRG 28 16 57%
Cargolux CRG 19 15 79%
Hainan Airlines PAX 9 8 89%
United Airlines PAX 246 6 2%
Alaska Airlines PAX 651 6 1%
Kalitta Air CRG 6 3 50%
ABX Air CRG 9 2 22%
Hawaiian Airlines PAX 11 2 18%
Southwest Airlines PAX 118 2 2%
National Air Cargo CRG 1 1 100%
Aerologic CRG 6 1 17%
American Airlines PAX 236 1 Less than 1%

*Operation type is indicated with "PAX" for passenger airline carrier or "CRG" for cargo airline carrier

Airlines with no operations during late night hours in 4th quarter, 2021:

Lufthansa, Japan Airlines, All Nippon Airlines, Emirates Airlines, British Airways, Atlas Air, Jazz Aviation, Iceland Air, Volaris, Spirit Airlines, Qatar Airways, Air France, Singapore Airlines

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