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Dane County residents worried about F-35 noise
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MADISON (AP) - Dane County residents say they're worried that basing F-35 fighter jets in Madison will create too much noise.

People around Truax Field are already fed up with the noise from F-16s, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

Sara Petzold said the windows of her home on Madison's north side rattle when military jets from Truax fly over. Melanie Foxcroft, who lives on Madison's east side, says F-16 noise is "ear-shattering."

"All conversation has to be suspended," she said. "It's so intrusive."

The F-16s also have conducted nighttime exercises over Monroe the past couple of months.

The U.S. Air Force is looking for two bases to house F-35 Lightning IIs. Truax is one of five finalists.

Air Force officials say the F-35s usually produce noise equivalent to F-16s but could be quieter on takeoff because they don't use afterburners as frequently. They also say that bases that become home to F-35s can take steps to reduce noise, such as adjusting takeoff and landing paths and by limiting night flights and afterburner use.

Noise studies taking into account conditions at Truax will be completed next year.

"If there are community concerns, that is definitely something, depending on mission requirements, that can be worked out with the local community," Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said. "Additionally, the noise from an F-35 may sound different than previous military jets, and this "difference' could cause people to perceive the noise as being louder, even if the measured noise levels are essentially the same."

Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce president Zach Brandon is leading an effort to persuade the Air Force to pick Truax for the F-35 because the move could create hundreds of jobs at the base. He told the newspaper that the economic benefits and the need for communities to contribute to national defense efforts outweigh the annoyance of noise.