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FAA???? Under 700ft???

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lsteigerwalt, Jul 11, 2014.

  1. lsteigerwalt

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    Good morning,

    Am I correct in the following? The FAA has always suggested that RC planes/etc stay below 400ft but actually have no jurisdiction under 700ft? Any help on this would be great.
     
  2. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    Think about it. If that were true, planes would have no safe way to land. The FAA has regulatory authority for the National Airspace which starts at the ground and ends in the upper atmosphere. How that applies to the near ground (under 100ft) is a matter of some debate as throwing a paper airplane could be considered an aerial activity.
     
  3. lsteigerwalt

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    Well understanding that there are restrictions near/around airports etc...I guess I was referring to other airspace...just trying to figure out the big deal between 400-700 feet of airspace...
     
  4. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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  5. ProfessorStein

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    Wow. Misinformation runs rampant.

    While the FAA is the authority for the National Airspace, they have designated portions as Class G, which is UNregulated below 1,200 MSL. And planes have a safe way to land because WHERE they land (namely AIRPORTS) have various Class designations of airspace which have varying floors and ceilings. Obviously airspace over and near airports is going to come all the way down to the deck or MSL. But other airspaces absolutely do not.

    And it's deemed that land owners actually own the airspace above their land "to the altitude that they occupy" (ie - a tall building) or would "reasonably utilize". (unless said land is already in one of the chief airspace classes due to airport or other factors.)

    Ain't no way a paper airplane can be considered aerial activity... unless it miraculously flies several hundred feet up... or into an airport.
     
  6. Buk

    Buk

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    Professor,

    May I have the legal reference for this:

    I'm headed into a discussion and wish to stand on firm legal ground stating a home owner does not own or control all the airspace above their property.

    thanks,
     
  7. ProfessorStein

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  8. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    I would agree.

    Class G is not always 1,200ft and the FAA still has regulatory authority over it. They could change where and how class G works if they felt it necessary.

    This is a matter of some debate.

    By the FAA's own assertion towards UAVs, this may not be true. At what height does the paper airplane become an aerial activity? Does this mean a UAV is not an aerial activity under this height? Is it that the paper airplane is not powered? There is no clear definition here.
     
  9. ProfessorStein

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    Actually, it is. If a pilot sees Class G, it is 1,200ft. If it's some other floor, then it's another class or it's clearly identified as a different height (and then it is not truly Class G). But I was using Class G (and it's 1,200 floor) it's as an example anyway. Other classes don't come all the way to the deck either.

    And the FAA would be required to collect public opinion before they can change any of the regs (which they are doing now with regard to UAVs)... they won't arbitrarily change them.
    Plus, we can/should only discuss the regs AS THEY EXIST NOW, not what they "may be" someday. I could come up with lots of "what ifs", but that's pretty pointless.

    No, it's really not. There are plenty of legal precedents that clearly define this to be the case. What is the topic of debate is what "reasonable" means.


    What do you think the drone debate has been about. But a drone and a paper airplane are not the same thing.
     
  10. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    I will revert to my original statement:

    So while certain types of airspace end of above the ground, the NAS includes it all. If it didn't there wouldn't be much of a debate over drones being used on private property for example. (And not be pedantic but G is 1,200ft AGL not MSL as you previously stated and there are areas where it is only to 700ft.)

    More importantly, if a paper airplane and a drone are not the same thing, what is this: http://gizmodo.com/5983425/turn-paper-a ... d-of-power

    Seems the lines are getting blurred and my point about the air immediately above the ground being a matter of some debate relates to how technology evolves past existing regulation, precedent or not which is why you can't leave out the "what ifs". This is especially true when the FAA is running around claiming that a 3lb drone operating at 10ft for $1 is somehow an aircraft.
     
  11. fastsmiles

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    Just a quick observation, but helicopters seem to routinely fly in ways that are deemed dangerous for drones to replicate. Granted the helicopter pilot is licensed, but then he is operating a much more complicated and less stabile machine. Helicopters routinely fly at 500' near my residence and follow highways, flying over moving and congested vehicles, & fly over population centers.
    If the FAA requires licensing of UAV pilots, will we also be granted the same rights as full sized aircraft, including helicopters?
    The argument that personal UAVs are aircraft seems full of pitfalls to me.
    Perhaps the solution is a separate government agency to regulate aircraft under 55 lbs. Especially since the FAA has proven its inability to come forward with reasonable guidelines and reasonable enforcement.
     
  12. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    The helicopter debate is a good one. I agree that many helicopter pilots fly way too aggressively in urban areas. No amount of training or skill will allow them to fly away from a mechanical failure if they're only 400ft above a crowded area. We have a big problem with helicopters in LA being flown much too low and too aggressively for no real reason.

    I've had camera helicopters flying 75ft above my downtown apt (150ft AGL) at 3am doing stunt maneuvers for the next Fast and Furious film. Apparently the FAA had a rep on-site. He was probably being taken care of in a trailer by drugs and women while the chopper buzzed residences all night long.

    I would much prefer to see those helicopters replaced by drones. If I had a choice of a window rattling, jet-A fueled, 1 ton vehicle vs. a 10lb lump of plastic over my head, I'll take the latter. There's no doubt for surveillance and protection purposes the helicopters will be replaced. It's only a matter of time.
     
  13. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
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    FAA does not make laws. It regulates the NAS. Pirker case was found in favor of the defendant. The FAA are appealing that decision. They are also proposing an interpretation of their existing regulations to treat commercial RC use as aircraft.
     
  14. SJBrit

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    That's a really good argument against the FAA Interpretation. Has anyone commented along those lines?
     
  15. kajunaviator

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    My question would then be, if the FAA were to treat commercial RC use as an aircraft. What will they tell me when I fly my RC in a commercial setting when I hold a commercial helicopter license? Will they allow me to fly for hire only if I get a drone endorsement on my FAA License, and then who will give me that endorsement?