GA Noise Abatement

John Wayne Airport (SNA) is one of the busiest and most noise sensitive airports in the United States. The Airport is located in the center of Orange County, California with residential areas in close proximity. To mitigate potential noise impacts from aircraft operations and to enhance compatibility with surrounding communities, the Airport maintains some of the most stringent noise rules in the United States.

The General Aviation Noise Ordinance (GANO)* has been adopted by the County of Orange to regulate the hours of operation and the maximum permitted noise levels associated with general aviation operations. This information has been prepared to introduce you to the GANO and to encourage the operation of your aircraft in the quietest manner possible consistent with safety. The Airport recognizes that pilot sensitivity is a key component of a successful noise abatement program, and your continued cooperation is greatly appreciated.

* Compliance with the GANO is mandatory unless deviations are made necessary by ATC instructions, a medical or in-flight emergency, or other safety considerations.

Proximity to the Community

The Airport is located just north of Newport Beach, west of Irvine, east of Costa Mesa, and south of Tustin and Santa Ana. Residential areas are located close to the Airport and the County of Orange is committed to minimizing noise in these neighborhoods (view map of residential areas).

More Information

Access and Noise Office: (949) 252-5185

JWA Operations: (949) 252-5256

Airport Website:

ATIS: 126.0

ATIS Phone Number: (714) 546-2279

Airport Elevation: + 56 ft. MSL

Noise Limits

The Airport maintains 10 permanent noise monitoring stations (NMS) located to the north and south of the Airport (view NMS map). The GANO specifies noise limits at each NMS that vary by time of day.

General Aviation Noise Limits

Daytime Hours Nighttime Hours
NMS 1S = 102.5 dB SENEL NMS 1S = 87.5 dB SENEL
NMS 2S = 101.8 dB SENEL NMS 2S = 87.6 dB SENEL
NMS 3S = 101.1 dB SENEL NMS 3S = 86.7 dB SENEL
  NMS 4S = 86.7 dB SENEL
  NMS 5S = 86.7 dB SENEL
  NMS 6S = 86.7 dB SENEL
  NMS 7S = 86.7 dB SENEL
  NMS 8N = 86.9 dB SENEL
  NMS 9N = 86.9 dB SENEL
  NMS 10N = 86.9 dB SENEL
Daytime hours are (local time):
  Departures Arrivals
Monday - Saturday 0700 to 2200 0700 to 2300
Sunday 0800 to 2200 0800 to 2300
All other hours are considered nighttime hours.
Compliance is determined by the clock at each NMS.

Description of Sanctions

Notice of Violation

In the event an aircraft exceeds the GANO noise limits at one or more locations, a “Notice of Violation” will be issued to the registered owner of the aircraft. The Notice of Violation applies to the aircraft owner, the aircraft operator, and the aircraft. Notices of Violation remain in effect for three years after the violation date.

Denial of Use of John Wayne Airport

If three GANO violations occur within a three-year period, the aircraft owner, the aircraft operator and the aircraft are subject to denial of use of the Airport for a period of three years.


Based on available historical noise data gathered by the Access and Noise Office and as determined by the Airport Director, the following list of aircraft are presumed incapable of meeting noise limitations defined in the GANO and are not permitted to land, tie down, take off or be based at the Airport, except in an emergency (this list is periodically updated and is maintained by the Access and Noise Office, 949.252.5185):

Aircraft Presumptively Incapable of Nighttime Departure Operations:

  • Gulfstream II, IIB, III
  • HS125-1A-600 (Rolls Royce Viper engines)
  • Jetstar II
  • Learjet 23, 24, 25, 28, 29
  • Piaggio P180
  • Sabreliner 40, 60, 65, 70, 75
  • Shooting Star T33/F80

Aircraft Presumptively Incapable of Nighttime Arrival Operations:

  • Gulfstream II, IIB, III
  • HS125-1A-600 (Rolls Royce Viper engines)
  • Piaggio P180
  • Sabreliner 40, 60, 65, 70, 75
  • Shooting Star T33/F80

Aircraft Presumptively Incapable of Any Operations at Any Time:

  • BAC 111
  • Jet Commander
  • Paris Jet
  • Westwind 1123 

As described in the GANO, any owner or operator of the above listed aircraft will have the opportunity to furnish evidence to the reasonable satisfaction of the Airport Director that such aircraft can operate within acceptable noise levels.

FBO general aviation aprons are limited to aircraft with maximum certificated gross takeoff weight of 100,000 lbs. (dual gear) and with wingspans less than 100 feet. General aviation aircraft are prohibited from using any portion of the air carrier commercial ramp.

Note that manufacturers have developed noise abatement procedures for the Gulfstream II, IIB, III and IV and Learjet 20 Series aircraft.

Recommended Procedures

View Special Noise Procedures.

Safety permitting, pilots are encouraged to follow the aircraft manufacturer’s recommended noise abatement procedures on all arrivals and departures.



  • Runway 20R/L are the preferred runways.
  • Avoid high power setting at low altitude over noise sensitive areas (see NMS map).


  • Pilots are encouraged to use minimum certificated landing flap setting in accordance with FAR 91.126c.
  • ATC/weather permitting, pilots are requested to make a visual straight-in approach.

Noise Monitoring Locations, Sensitive Land Uses and Radar Track Maps

View the NMS map showing the Noise Monitoring Stations (NMS) and residential areas on an aerial photograph and the flight track maps showing radar data plotted on a street map. These flight tracks show the preferred range of flight tracks into and out of the Airport.

Your cooperation in minimizing noise in these areas by adhering to the preferred flight tracks and complying with the mandatory noise limits is greatly appreciated.

DME Distance to Noise Monitors*

  • NMS 1S    0.4 nm
  • NMS 2S    0.4 nm
  • NMS 3S    0.7 nm
  • NMS 4S    1.3 nm
  • NMS 5S    1.3 nm
  • NMS 6S    1.8 nm
  • NMS 7S    2.9 nm
  • NMS 8N    2.1 nm
  • NMS 9N    4.2 nm
  • NMS 10N  5.8 nm

*Approximate DME distance measured from ISNA localizer, located south of Runway 20R.

Quick Links:

Download brochure in pdf-format

John Wayne Airport NOTAMs

GA Noise Abatement

Noise Abatement Procedures

Emergency Medical Flights Form (pdf)

GA Noise Abatement


Noise Complaints:

John Wayne Airport
Access and Noise Office
(949) 252-5185

Fullerton Municipal Airport
Noise Complaints
(714) 738-6323

Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base
Noise Abatement Hotline
(562) 795-2573


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