FAA to study KFI tower rebuild risk


The FAA has agreed to further study whether a reconstructed tower for KFI-AM LA would threaten the safety of pilots flying near Fullerton Municipal Airport. The previous single tower at the La Mirada, CA site less than two miles from the airport was toppled in 2004 when a small plane slammed into it, killing two, says the Orange County Register. KFI has switched to an auxiliary tower at the same site at reduced power. Note the site in the center of the photo-inside the round fenced area. The auxiliary site is just off to the Northwest, in the photo as well.

The review comes in response to petitions filed by Fullerton and the aeronautical division of the California DOT that say the tower poses an obvious hazard because a tower in that spot has already killed two people. The FAA previously made a determination that a rebuilt tower would pose "no greater risk" than the previous tower. Local pilots and Fullerton officials have strongly opposed plans to rebuild the tower to 684 feet. The old tower was 760 feet. The FAA must finish its review before the La Mirada City Council can give the tower final consideration. The paper said there will be an opinion issued by the end of November.

RBR/TVBR observation: There is no reason that the tower shouldn’t be rebuilt. They have lights on top of them, remember? If pilot error stopped tower construction, we wouldn’t have many of them. Two miles is plenty of space from the airport.