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Drone operator faces federal charges for flying too close to ferry

Discussion in 'News' started by GoodnNuff, Aug 27, 2015.

  1. GoodnNuff

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  2. tcope

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    From what I watched, they reported incorrect information. It was not the ferry captain who had the encounter. The captain said he's yet to encounter a drone. The report was from some other boat captain and they mention no information on that report. They appeared to to enough to report it happened and charges were made but then said nothing about that real issue. They instead reported on the ferry they featured, reporting that it was a "ferry 'that had the encounter.

    I could not read the article in the first link. Ads were the only thing that showed up on mobile device.

    Okay, I was able to read the first article. Not much more info. The new agency chose to cover someone not even involved with their story. Also, they lied again about the FAA reports. We now know pilots did not report 650 encounters with drones.

    The FAA states they get 3 or 4 reports of drones a month... yet they have 650 reports over 8 months? This guy needs a math lesson.
     
    #3 tcope, Aug 27, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2015
  3. GoodnNuff

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    No, the information was not "incorrect," the captain being interviewed was not the captain who reported the incident. That is made quite clear in both the article and the video interview.

    "Captain Koivu says in his 40 years operating ferries his biggest concern has always been other boats, but now that a fellow captain came face to face with a drone June 20th, he’s got a new obstacle on the water."

    The Coast Guard has indentified the pilot and is investigating the incident, according to the local news. Not sure why the captain who reported the flight was not willing to be interviewed.

    The first link works fine for me. If you are truly interested go to kirotv.com and search or just look under today's local news heading.
     
  4. shipdriver

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    Although risk of collision with a drone is meaningless and any ship would be stupid to alter course because of a drone (unless there is a specific terrorist threat regarding drones), it can be a major distraction especially during a mooring evolution (and especially if the drone is right in front) which requires a lot of concentration. The last thing we need is for a ferry to run aground or have a allision with the pier because the crew lost focus because of a drone buzzing about between them and the pier. There is also a standoff distance post-9/11 (and post-Cole) for security reasons. We here should know that consumer drones can't really see effectively inside a ferry pilothouse, but there is a security element to consider which is based on potential explosives delivery, however small the charge is that can be carried by a small drone. There are usually passengers milling about at the bow and stern on the ferries exposed so it wouldn't take much. Also, the basis for restricting access to the pilothouse is more akin to restricting access to a plane's cockpit in flight and is based on physically letting (or rather not letting) people into the control space while the vehicle is operating and is also a post-9/11 thing and has nothing to do with seeing into the pilothouse.
     
  5. GoodnNuff

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    I'm not in the shipping industry nor have I ever owned a boat, so you have far more experience on the water than I do, however it was the news reporter on channel 7 last night who said they were not allowed to film inside the the control room due to post 9-11 security regulations.
    They made it sound like it had everything to do with seeing into the pilothouse, especially when either the reporter or the captain alluded to the risk of being filmed and not knowing whether it was a recreational user or potential terrorist with their camera pointed through the window?
    But regardless whether filming presents a security risk or not - it is how the public percieves these reports and their fear mongering slant, and how those preceptions could eventually work their way into local ordinances, or state or national laws.
    Flying your drone stupidily like this simply is not worth the risk to the hobby, IMO.

    As an aside; I recently took a photo through my living room window, from about 12 feet away, in the afternoon when glare wasn't an issue. I can blow up my 4K stills and read the header scrolling across my television, which was about 15 feet away from the window. I was amazed I could pick up this much detail. While what we see live in our monitors isn't very detailed, I think we sometimes we forget how much is actually captured and visible when you zoom in on the photo's details.
     
  6. shipdriver

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    I can definitely see the ability to see a light-emitting monitor if conditions are right and if, as you were, very close, and of course your house wasn't moving. I have not been able to find anything regarding pilothouse photography in WAC, RCW or anywhere on the WSF website, including the numerous pages devoted to security. If one is denied access to the pilothouse altogether, that does by nature preclude photography in the pilothouse, but I'm actually quite curious about as to whether it was reporters misinterpreting things (all too common) or there is some unpublicized rule about photography. It is definitely not about classified material. I do see federal regs about restricted access to sensitive areas, but even they don't mention photography. Interesting.
     
  7. johan

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    ... He says as he's allowing himself to be interviewed while also running the boat. :rolleyes:

    Right. For safety reasons. Right. Safety reasons according whom exactly? And why exactly is it dangerous to have pictures of wheelhouse controls which anyone with an IQ above 80, 30 seconds of free time and a google connection could easily obtain?
     
    AlmostTan and ianwood like this.
  8. Meta4

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    That's got to be ignorance on the part of the reporter and/or whoever told them that they are forbidden to film the wheelhouse for security or safety reasons.
    There's nothing secret or mysterious about the wheelhouse controls of a ferry.

    The reporting is pretty slack.
    They say it’s not illegal for people to fly drones near ferries, but get too close and it could mean federal charges
    If it's not illegal, then what is the guy charged with?
     
  9. GoodnNuff

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    I don't think he has been charged. The incident is being investigated by the Coast Guard.
    Filming is restricted to public areas of the ferry. Not sure if there is an enforceable law that would allow prosecution if a restricted area was filmed:

    http://www.whidbeycamanoislands.com/downloads/whidbey-camano_104.pdf

    "Film/photo activity can be permitted only in publicly accessible spaces (no filming in wheelhouse, engine room, or WSF ‘employee only’ spaces). Film/photo activity is not permitted within the terminal vehicle holding lanes, unless the film crew is accompanied by a WSF representative."

    "Filming/photography of WSF restricted areas and security equipment is strictly prohibited. This includes security cameras, locked doors and security keypads."
     
  10. davis

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    what is the legal distance for shooting a vessel? in public areas.