Dear Crawford County Voters,
I am a proud born and raised Crawford County resident, graduate of Buckeye Central schools, where I was well prepared to attend college and begin a career. My path took me away from Crawford County, but every time I visit my parents, it feels like my true home. I’m very proud of my Crawford County heritage, and I’m incredibly thankful for the people of character who poured into me there.
My father is a pilot of small airplanes, and I had the unique opportunity to grow up flying. My dad has enjoyed a career that evolved into repairing and restoring airplanes on our farm, turning some of the field into a grass airstrip. That runway is marked on the Ohio map for pilots (sectional), and many pilots have landed there when a noise was heard, or an indicator illuminated since it was built 30 years ago. My father’s airstrip is 10-15 miles from any county airports, so it truly is a safe harbor for wayward pilots. My father continues to operate his LLC business, where he is known as a detailed airplane mechanic and inspector. Customers fly their planes in for him to restore and repair.
Upon hearing of the prospect of wind turbines being erected in the area, and as the estate executor for my parents, I began looking up safety considerations for airports. According to Federal Aviation Administration’s Code, Part 77, which is the law for safe airports, there should be an “ellipse” around the airport’s imagined airspace, which should have nothing taller than 50 feet nearby, increasing to 300 feet at the edges. Unobstructed airspaces surrounding nearly 2 miles on either side of the runway (a distance of 9000 feet) in an elliptical shape is needed for safe visual approach of airports. Given the proposed height of the Apex turbines are over 650 feet, they will obstruct the airspace of our airport. Since several neighbors have signed leases with Apex, this will happen if the county votes to allow the turbines.
If allowed to be built, Apex will put my family’s airstrip out of business. As neighboring property owners discuss land rights, it is important to take into account the land rights of the existing businesses in the area, including a well-established airport. If the turbines go in as proposed, the community will lose this private runway, where many kids have gotten their first airplane ride (their Young Eagle Flight), and others have fallen in love with the joy of aviation. Pilots flying through will no longer have a safe place for an emergent/forced landing.
As executor of my parents’ estate, I have a vested interest in stewarding this property. My sons hope to continue the aviation legacy of my father, and one hopes to solo at the airstrip on his 16th birthday soon. Given his interests, there is a real chance he could continue the business far into the future, contributing to the local economy. We shall see what the future holds. If the airspace is obstructed, he will lose this potential opportunity.
I cannot vote on November 1st because I’m no longer a resident of Crawford County. Please help me protect my family’s legacy by voting “Yes” on Issue 4 to STOP the Industrial Wind Turbines.
Dora (Schulze) Inskeep
Marysville Oh 43040