WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

The Best View In Town: A Helicopter Ride Over Los Angeles

Jun 7, 2016
Originally published on June 8, 2016 11:49 am

Los Angeles is famous for many things, including its traffic and its traffic helicopters. Rick Dickert is one of the traffic and weather reporters who rides high above the city every morning, watching the city’s streets for the morning commute.

During his latest trip to Los Angeles, Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson rode along with Dickert and talked about Los Angeles traffic and how the city is changing.

It can be easy to feel bad for people listening to traffic helicopters from the ground – especially at 5 a.m. But Dickert said he and his crew do their best to limit their impact.

“We are very noise cautious, obviously,” Dickert said. “Unfortunately, if there’s a situation, say there’s a barricade, there’s a standoff, say there’s a horrible accident or any type of news breaking situation, and we’re positioned right here over Toluca Lake, and we have to sit for 30 minutes to cover the event, then we’re going to upset some people down below. But we do the best we can, we pull away, we move to a higher altitude.”

Despite complaints and legislation that can make life more difficult for reporters like Dickert, the work remains important.

“We feel like we’re doing a good public service,” Dickert said.

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