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ATTENTION PILOTS - FLY RESPONSIBLY!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by damoncooper, Jun 30, 2014.

  1. damoncooper

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    I posted this elsewhere in response to the jackass who crashed his quad into a building in NYC's Times Square, but it bears saying again obviously as we continue to see stunts like this posted while the FAA (in the US) and other regulators around the world formulate rules and regulations for our hobby, due next year:

    DON'T fly over crowds of people.

    DON'T crash like an *** into buildings and

    DON'T post this crap on YouTube to be used as the reason the FAA and regulators in ALL countries regulate or ban our hobby.

    If that plea doesn't resonate with you, this should:

    If you hurt or kill someone, your life is over. In the US, when you finally get out of jail for involuntary manslaughter or worse, the personal injury lawyers for the victim or their families will ensure you, your children and your grandchildren never have 2 pennies to rub together as long as you live!

    FLY RESPONSIBLY!!
     
  2. jcalahor

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    u are right just the other day, a "photographer" posted instagram pics, they were aerial shoots of crowds below it, first he posted in a JLo concert at the toyota park in Chicago, the other which was worst, above a huge crowd of people (maybe 5000) in grant park the day when US played a WorldCup match. I told him that the pic was good but he should avoid flying over people, nEver got any reply, I have his instagram if u want it. He flew over the buckinham fountain was well which is usually crowded. I feel really unfair while we spent a lot of time figuring out time and locations where few people are going to be around (i live in downtown), while this idiot just fly without any concerns.
     
  3. gecarey

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    This needs to be a sticky...!!!
     
  4. kitari

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    I've also been seeing a few videos of people flying around places like mcdonalds and saying they were spying on them. Stuff like that is what's giving us a bad name as well and also giving uninformed people more reasons to think we're all creepers or something.
     
  5. Suwaneeguy

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    A tad paranoid aren't we?
    Rules and regulations regarding hobby use of remote control vehicles, aerial or not, ain't gonna happen.
    The US Congress has already told the FAA, in a law, that hobby flying SHALL NOT be regulated.

    As I understand it, the fool in NYC did not post the video to youtube. It was posted by someone else.
    Even though he was illegally fined, the guy paid the fine. Now that, to me, is being irresponsible.
    Not knowing what the law actually is when you start this hobby.

    Probably the only reason so much fuss is happening over these creatures is because people who live in cities have never seen them before. Aircraft hobbyists had been like totally restricted to flying fields. So the general public never sees them around. While I could fly mine in my mobile home park, I avoid doing so. Mainly for all the dang overhead wires we have. I don't want to be held responsible for damaging the lines and watching my bird go up in flames.

    If you don't want the FAA taking control of our hobby, then get off your lazy behind and start writing letters to those who represent in the lawmaking areas of government.

    Now get out there and go flying!
     
  6. evilfurryone

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    There will always be exceptions to rules. When 4 pounds of defective drone falls down from 200 feet and kills or worse permanently disables people then cities will create rules that will regulate the drone flying. Like the US national parks that said no drones, so can New York say suddenly that unless you have special permit (obtainable by passing specific training), insurance etc you can't even fly the drones anymore. And even then in specific areas.

    This may sound excessive right now, but all it takes is one drone operator to **** up on a massive scale.

    Hobby RC toys used to be either really toys or too specialized for the masses. Bigger toys were mostly operated by intelligent people. These days the entry level has been lowered considerably and this means that even the FAA needs to consider this and evolve.
     
  7. Nidge

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    Damoncooper makes a very valid point but as much as we try we will never be able to educate those that think they know better :(

    There was a recent incident at a Pirates baseball game where someone was flying a Phantom over the crowd and playing area. Security found the chap outside of the arena but could do no more than ask him to desist as there are no rules, as yet, in the CONUS, that say he couldn't do this. Just because there is nothing in writing doesn't make such a stunt acceptable and to be honest the pilot must hold the same I.Q as that of a lemon if he did not appreciate the risk he was subjecting the crowds and the players to.

    The Phantom is undoubtably the most popular RTF multirotor on the market and as such has been adopted by many with differing interests, whether it be RC flight, Photography/Videography etc. But I don't think it can be denied that it is the ever increasing reports of Phantoms being misused:

    The NYC/Manhattan incident.

    The cretin who lost his first Phantom on top of a football stadium so bought another and nearly lost that looking for the original one.

    The incident at Vancouver Airport.

    To name a few and then YouTube is resplendent with examples of dumb stunts with Phantoms where the operator is attempting to break the high altitude free fall record, and so on and so on, that has prompted the FAA to act in the way they have. Even my wife was subject to the irresponsible use of a Phantom when she was running in the San Francisco Bay to Breakers run last month when someone thought it was a good idea to fly over the crowd and buzz the runners.

    DJI have not been particularly helpful in promoting the safe use of their products. Many of their promo videos are more like adverts for the latest smartphone touting it as some kind of must have social media accessory. So it comes as no surprise that those who know no better will attempt the ridiculous.

    Many have bought Phantoms with absolutely no RC flight experience whatsoever. How many posts have been made to this forum by new users complaining that their Phantom doesn't work only to find out that they didn't bother to read the online manual and find the stick position arming sequence?

    It's through forums such as this that education in risk assessment and damage limitation should be a priority. Some may interpret this as being preachy but it is only through adopting a more responsible stance that we can in turn regain any credibility. I very rarely fly my Phantom these days due to the undeserved stigma associated with it, my time and effort is spent now with self built platforms. Even those with no interest in the multirotor community recognise and associate the Phantom, in its various guises, with recklessness.

    So with all the above in mind I urge all that when you intend to fly first of all look closely at the area and the situation. Give very careful consideration to what elements you do not have direct control over and if there is even the slightest possibility that if the worse were to happen you would be putting others at risk then don't do it. Move on and find a situation or subject more suited.

    Regards

    Nidge
     
  8. BigTulsa

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    +100.

    There are times when I fly over my neighborhood. By neighborhood I mean my backyard. Directly above. Usually when little or no wind and no way of drift. And even then not very often and not very high.

    I have three places I go now. All three are parks that are not really very busy. When they are, I move on. If all have more people than I'm comfortable having the Vision around, I go home. Pretty simple.
     
  9. doug86

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    I'm quite sure you will be proved wrong. There is a huge difference between a bunch of guys flying in circles around a controlled field, as RC hobbyists have done for decades, and the ability to fly a quad copter many kilometers out of sight and up to 6-8000' altitudes. The old rules just don't apply to the new technology, and new rules will be made.

    The regulations are coming, just as sure as the sunrise.
    d86
     
  10. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
    Staff Member

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    A couple of semi-random thoughts on this:

    • As much as we may not want this to happen, it will. Some people drive their cars stupidly. Even some private pilots fly their planes stupidly. It happens at all levels. And it is very subjective, i.e. the maniac who drives faster than you and the jerk who drives slower than you.

    • The media are demonizing drone mishaps and often way beyond their real hazard potential. We need to distinguish between flying across the approach path at YVR vs. overflying a bunch of people vs. a Phantom crashing in someone's yard. The risk potential is vastly different and we need to acknowledge the true risk and not pander to the media fear mongering.

    • The only way to reduce the number of "knucklehead" incidents is education. Most of the people on this site -- just by being here -- are not the concern. It's the ones who don't bother to seek out information that are the concern. They don't know what they should and shouldn't do and they don't care until it is stuffed in their face.

    • We could establish a "safe flying code", publish it online with training material. Establish skill levels with corresponding limits. Work with DJI to promote its use right out of the box (e.g. a safety "read this first" insert directing you to a site). I would imagine they would be very receptive to such an effort. Advertise products on the site, make a few dollars while promoting safety. Win / win.

    • Personally, I don't feel the AMA guidelines have adapted to the times. Others will disagree. I personally have no intention of ever flying at an RC field ever. I fly to film, as an amateur. Others fly as they have flown RC for years. And others fly in new ways. All reasonable uses must be considered.

    • Outside of a true calamity, none of these incidents will influence the FAA's future actions one iota. The reality is the FAA's interest is in big business and will remain firmly so. Multi-million dollar aerospace lobbying dollars are doing far more damage than 10,000 reports of Phantom crashes ever will. The FAA does not care about your needs, the AMA's interests, or any amateur or small-time professional users. The AMA, DJI, and all other RC entities combined have negligible, if any, influence on the FAA's future plans.
     
  11. alpacafarmer

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    Stupid people will do stupid things; bad people will find ways to do bad things...this is how it's always been and I’m guessing, how it will always be.

    I'm afraid that the FAA will try to put regulations in place to stop both. The result of their actions will be that the "normal" pilot (recreational flier, entrepreneur, videographer, and the folks with common sense) will lose all hope as to finding a place “approved” to fly. But, all of the stupid and bad people will still be doing what they are doing today…

    Unfortunately, the only short and long term winner in this game will be the media…because their lifeblood is stupid and bad.

    So all I can say is enjoy the freedom we have today, because if it’s not gone tomorrow, it will be gone soon.
     
  12. damoncooper

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    Agreed. I like the idea of a "safe flying code". I also like the idea of lobbying DJI to include it in the box with every quad/octo/hex.

    I'd also advocate they add some important info in the box describing flight hazards and avoidance for things that will likely result in loss of aircraft especially VRS.

    I'd also like to see the printed manual in the box with a big red "read completely before flying" warning on the cover.

    If it gets really crazy in the future, maybe an activation code would be required to enable flight operation the first time, input into the Assistant software, locked to the specific quad/octo/hex and acquired online after taking and passing a "flight safety and fundamentals" test. The test would verify the pilot activating a particular quad had at least read and understood the manual and safety code. It could also require the pilot agree to adhere to the "safe flying code".

    As a carrot to DJI, online activation and registration would allow DJI to collect owner details and provide an avenue to communicate with customers directly about safety updates and optionally new products etc. Selling through partner channels, they have no idea who most of their end users are today.
     
  13. petersachs

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    Just to clarify, only the federal government can regulate things "in flight." States and local governments can regulate the places from which they can take-offs and landings, (which are regulations of ground activities), and can regulate their own agencies use of flying craft, but that's it. Otherwise it's preempted in accordance with the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

    As for the National Parks, even it (in it's own language) states it cannot regulate the airspace over parks. It can only regulate takeoffs from and lands on park property.
     
  14. Flying Cephlopod

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    Just as the FAA's priority is Big Business, the medias' priority is dramatic buzz (that could be a pun but that's not my intention), the "scoop", and the perpetual "Breaking News" that isn't usually breaking news.

    "Drone" shoehorns into attention grabbing dramatic buzz all too well, unfortunately. Consider some common origins, such as "drone bee" and the fear of them. In more contemporary dramatic buzz, the military drone in a war-time context is something to be feared--with spying on and tracking the bad guy and blasting his vehicles or dwelling to smithereens.

    It's been over a hundred years since automobiles and other motorized vehicles took to the roads--not a day goes by when some imbecile, moron, or idiot does something foolish and deadly while "operating" such motor vehicles. Society has not solved that problem in over a century even though we have laws, education, licenses, insurance, and so on.
     
  15. Happyflyer

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    The quad flying problem is just like the gun problem in the US. There are 23,000+ gun control laws on the books and it still does not stop the loonies from using their guns in a bad way. Any laws on our hobby will just hurt the responsible owners just as it does with guns. For anyone that thinks I am complaining about the gun problem, I have a locked safe full of them. I once sold them. RESPONSIBLY.