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Did the police lie to me?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by passive jay, Aug 7, 2015.

  1. passive jay

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    I am going to Mackinac Island in a couple weeks for vacation and I wanted to bring my drone with me to take pictures.

    I was not sure if drones were allowed on the island so I did some research.

    Since most of the island is a state park I decided to contact the park system.

    This is the email I got back.

    "Jay.

    In response to your question about drones, they are currently not banned in the Mackinac Island State Park.

    However, it is my expectation that the Mackinac Island State Park Commission will be banning drones in the State Park (83% of the island) at their September meeting. There is increasing concern about the safety of drones around the horses and because of the number of aircraft using the Mackinac Island Airport (which is in the State Park.) As a result, I strongly suggest that you do not bring or use your drone on Mackinac Island.

    You will have to contact the City of Mackinac Island Police Department to inquire about restrictions on property under City jurisdiction.

    Phil Porter, Director
    Mackinac State Historic Parks"


    So while he is obviously not a fan of drones it is not against the rules to fly a drone in the park, which as he noted is most of the island.

    So I figured I am good... but just in case I also sent a message to what I thought was the police department on the island. I went to the city page and got this email.


    mipdchief@cityofmi.org.

    I emailed them this.

    "Good afternoon!

    I was just writing to double check that it is ok to fly a drone on the island.

    I already contacted Mr Phil Porter of the DNR who told me that drones were allowed on state park property. Since that is about 80% of the island it would seem that I would not have any problems but I wanted to double check to make sure the city did not have any ordinances the Mr Porter was unaware of.

    I do not plan to fly the drone over any city property. (my current plan is to launch it from the Grand, where I am staying, and bring it up to 400ft. At that altitude I would take some pictures and bring it back down without flying over any other areas of the island. That plan might change but I wanted to make sure everything was ok before I did anything other than that.


    Thank you in advance for your help.



    Jay."

    and this was what I got back

    "Actually, the city has an ordinance banning drone that just went into effect this year. More of a safety issue with the horses."

    Thats it. It doesnt say what the ordinance is. It does not even have a tagline at the bottom saying who its from.

    I sent him back this email

    "Thank you for getting back to me, could you send me a link to the announcement or the details of the ordinance? I looked online and could not find anything on it."


    I sent that yesterday and have not heard anything back.

    Is it just me or does the email from the "chief" seem a bit shady?
     
  2. loganr

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    If you're questioned just show them the emails you've had with whoever it is you talked to. You asked for the M.O but they haven't provided it to you nor can you find it. Just fly the **** thing.
     
  3. SouthernPhantom

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    Well, this is happening at several places in the country.

    I'm surprised that Atlanta's new "ban on drones" has not gotten any notice here yet.

    In the spring, a couple of people harmlessly used drones to take pictures of the state capitol building, and the Governor asked for, AND GOT, a drone ban radiating five miles from the centrally-located capitol building. This area includes most of Atlanta. !!!???!!!

    Needless to say, there has been a lot of pushback, saying that they didn't have the legislative authority or enforcement authority. One legal challenge will probably get the whole thing thrown out.

    Most people are flying them anyway, just not near the capitol. We still see them in Piedmont Park (Atlanta's version of Central Park).

    This is a state that actively fought to allow semi-automatic weapons in the atrium of the world's busiest airport and state-college libraries, but was freaked out by a couple of small drones! It wasn't the pilots' fault at all.

    We need effective lobbying advocates!

    In fact, I'm going to repost this as a new conversation, as well!
     
    #3 SouthernPhantom, Aug 7, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2015
    jcknows0 likes this.
  4. Wizaerd

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    Meh, it's a bother to ask... I live by the famous old adage "It's better to apologize afterwards than it is to ask for permission beforehand..."
     
    Christy likes this.
  5. passive jay

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    someone called the city clerks office for me and apparently there is NO ordinance against drones on the island. So whoever that was that was from the police department that replied to my email straight up lied to me.
     
  6. LUISMARTINEZ

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    Cops lie? I'm shocked!:eek:. I'm a retired cop, many times is not intentional but ignorance. It's best to research local ordinances yourself. As a supervisor in an admn. unit, I still had lots of patrol officers coming to see me asking questions about the law. My standard reply was, did you look it up and read it? They usually didn't so I'd tell them to go read the law then come back and ask. Cops are just as lazy as most folks.
     
  7. 750r

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    Nothing towards you Louis (I don't know ya) there are a lot of cops that do not know the law they are supposed to uphold and instead just make up their own .
    I would bet the guy you talked to just dose not like "drones" because of the news story's that are hyped up for ratings . Way to many people are mislead so we get hate and laws made .
     
  8. LUISMARTINEZ

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    None taken. I thought that is just what I said. I'm the sort of fellow that's has to see it in writing, too many people bs'ing.
     
    750r likes this.
  9. LUISMARTINEZ

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    I emailed the chief of police, the mayor and the city clerk, asking for a copy of their "drone" ordinance. No replies.

    The CMI police must not be big on community policing...
     
  10. passive jay

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    Really? thanks man, i appreciate it!
     
  11. LUISMARTINEZ

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    Response from the city clerk:

    "Hi Luis,

    There is a ban on commercial drone flying within a 5 mile radius of an airport. To my knowledge, the City of Mackinac Island doesn’t have an ordinance in place yet, but it is in the process.

    Thank you,


    Linda"
     
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  12. tcope

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    This email stinks of ignorance. It seems like they are simply quoting what is already not allowed by the FAA and not their own policy. Perhaps this is more on point then attempting to enforce a local ordnance that would probably not be legal anyway.
     
  13. LUISMARTINEZ

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    Really. I saw it as an honest reply.
     
    GoodnNuff likes this.
  14. passive jay

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    i called the airport and talked to the assistant manager today.

    I told him that I was going to be staying on the island next week, owned a quadcopter (he interupted with "huh", i had to say drone for him to understand), and had planned on taking some photos of the island, and that I was calling because the FAA recommended that i contact the airport and let them know what I was doing if I was flying within 5 miles of them,

    At first he was against the idea. He said "well sir, first off you have to understand this is a historic island" and started to talk about the horses and not bothering the guests.

    I let me express his concerns and when he finished I explained to him that I totally understood why that could a problem, and that my intention was to find an area away from the crowds. launch, and ascend to 300-400 feet. At that point I would take some pictures and then land. At no point would I be flying low, and I had no plans to try to fly across the island.


    Once I did that it really changed the tone of the conversation. He asked me where I planned to launch from, I told him I had never been to the island. He actually started suggesting spots that would make for good pictures. We ended the conversation with him saying as long as I proceeded as I had described it should not be a problem. I asked him if I should call when I was actually going to launch the drone and let them know. He said it would be a good idea just because if someone saw me and called them they could say "yes we know what he is doing, its ok"

    Strangely enough airplanes were not really a concern for him. They have to stay to a certain flightpath and ascend to 1900ft so as long as I stay under 400ft and stay away from the actual airport (like I have a choice) it should be fine.

    So it looks like I will be getting some great pictures!
     
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  15. tcope

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    A ban on commercial air flight within 5 miles of an airport? It's certainly not their regulation. It appears to be a combination of FAA rules which are incorrect as they are being combined into one thing.
     
  16. LUISMARTINEZ

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    Ooooo K. you are right, she was trying to be helpful AND the OP already stated earlier he understood the 5 mile rule. You are parsing words but YOU WIN.
     
  17. JKDSensei

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    I'm looking forward to the video's. Have fun!
     
  18. IflyinWY

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    passive jay,

    I mentioned this in another thread you opened on this topic, apparently it's worth mentioning again. If you and your drone upset a THOUSAND POUND HORSE, and it happens to drag a little ole lady into the lake, how will you feel? If the "Little ole lady" is my mom, I'll come looking for you.;)

    How about this? We add "Informed" common sense to our list of "Things Not To Do".

    As much as I would love to see aerial footage of the island from a Phantom, or any other drone, I don't think it's such a good idea. Personally I cannot support your flying on the island. A few days ago, it sounded like a great idea. Today, I'm not so sure.

    Perhaps in the future, places such as this will have times set aside for our crazy flying machines to fly without upsetting the normal operations. In the meantime, I hope you don't make the news. :)
     
  19. johan

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    Jay, based on the responses you got, its pretty clear that while they don't yet have an ordnance on the books, certain individuals on the island are opposed to it. So I would be wary and proceed with caution. Machinac is very small community. Everyone knows everyone on a first name basis.

    Often in those sorts of settings, the law is whatever the officer in charge decides it is that day at that time. So ordinance or not, if a cop or city official approaches you and tells you to stop flying because its illegal, its probably in your best interest to listen.

    That being said, no one had any trouble with my flying my kites when I was there. And I was able to get a few decent shots from the kite rig. No drone required.

    [​IMG]CRW_0249 by J Holzmer, on Flickr

    [​IMG]CRW_0260 by J Holzmer, on Flickr

    [​IMG]CRW_0271 by J Holzmer, on Flickr
     
  20. djphantom2015

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    Imagine, I also called an airport (can't say the name) but the manager agreed for me to fly as long as I set 100 feet, as the area I had to film was right on the runway path. So before I started I phoned and I was cleared. No planes landed during the 15th minutes film so I did not end up in the newspaper :)