Helicopters are becoming a familiar sight and sound in Oakland with the protests over the shooting of Oscar Grant by former BART police officer Johannes Mehserle. Angela Woodall of the reports that news stations are juggling the need to get helicopters close to the action with concerns about noise.

Helicopters are an important newsgathering tool that helps keep people informed, especially during emergencies, said Channel 2 news director Ed Chapuis. “There’s a need for us to be there,” he said.

The story notes that city governments can’t regulate news helicopters, but at least one Oakland official, council member Nancy Nadel, has met with stations in an attempt to limit noise.

SF Press Club News

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