Dear Marc Joffe and Everyone Else;
A self-explanatory update on - Blue Angel Crash - Why the Blue Angels Coming Here? They may come here and then again they may not come here and then maybe just the Fleet only and then maybe not only.
Marc - the thing is the up to 1,000,000 waterfront visitors and their money and the things that they buy - you gotta overcome this first - even as Peskin says - keep'm over open water only.
There's also mention of a group: Bay Area Peace Navy and a spokesperson: Lincoln Cushing, a UC Berkeley librarian.
Welcome Aboard - Sail Ho' - I have not yet begun to fight.
Fleet Week plans hinge on findings
Fliers highlight of annual S.F. event -- Newsom says he'll see what Navy says
Demian Bulwa, Chronicle Staff Writer
Monday, April 23, 2007
Organizers of San Francisco's annual Fleet Week festivities said Sunday that results of an investigation into a fatal crash at a Blue Angels air show in South Carolina would help determine whether the Navy fliers would roar through Bay Area skies again in October.
"As far as why the accident occurred, that will affect us a lot," said Edward Leonard, chairman of the San Francisco Fleet Week Committee.
The nonprofit group produces an event that since 1981 has revolved around the Blue Angels and served as a vehicle for Navy recruiting. Leonard said he expected the show to go on, "assuming nothing systemic" is found in the probe, like a problem with the Blue Angels' F/A-18 Hornet jets.
"These things are extremely rare," Leonard said. "Their maneuvers are approved by the (Federal Aviation Administration) with a view toward safety. They don't let them do maneuvers that are unsafe. My reaction is this is a terrible accident and we need to find out why it happened. But basically they have a very safe show."
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom said his response to the crash will rest heavily on Navy investigators' findings. Speaking outside a Sunday event in the Mission District, Newsom said he also was waiting for the Blue Angels to announce whether they will adjust their schedule or procedures as a result of the crash.
A spokesman for the flying team said the Navy has not yet decided whether to change this year's schedule.
"The status of what we are going to do hasn't even been discussed," said U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer Victor Brabble, a spokesman for the Blue Angels. "We have to get through this moment first."
"Obviously, to any objective person this is going to raise questions of safety, and appropriately so," Newsom said. He said the Blue Angels are "truly one of the great highlights of Fleet Week. It's a thrill to watch. At the same time, I recognize that we get thousands of calls every year about the noise and safety issues."
When the Blue Angels did not perform in 2004 -- the Canadian Snowbirds and their CT-144 Tutors took their place -- the city got even more calls complaining about their absence, Newsom said.
The Blue Angels' Fleet Week performances are scheduled Oct. 6 and Oct. 7, with practices set Oct. 4 and 5. Leonard said Fleet Week costs $400,000 to $600,000 to produce -- funds that come primarily from advertisers -- and draws up to 1 million people to San Francisco's waterfront. Organizers receive a small grant from city hotel tax revenue, Leonard said.
While popular with tourists and the many residents who hold rooftop viewing parties, Fleet Week has been controversial in the past, with opponents saying the Blue Angels are too noisy and potentially dangerous for a heavily populated area like San Francisco. And some say the event should highlight more than the military.
"These guys may be the best fliers in the world, but accidents happen," said Lincoln Cushing, a UC Berkeley librarian who has criticized Fleet Week for 15 years as a member of the Bay Area Peace Navy. "The city of San Francisco should strongly think twice about an event like this, given that there has been an accident and that there's no guarantee that it won't happen again."
Aaron Peskin, president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, said Sunday that city leaders should "have a serious conversation about whether (the Blue Angels) should fly in airspace over a populated area." He added, "That doesn't mean they shouldn't come ... maybe they should keep their flight patterns over water only."