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Being totally shut down by local recreational airport
406 8 2019-2-25
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Alluvian
lvl.1
United States
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I don't even own a drone yet, but really want to get a phantom 3 advanced or pro (and later a freestyle fpv quad).
I live about 2.6 miles from a local recreational airport (Hollister Municipal Airport).  Before spending $500 ish on a used drone my wife and I tried to contact the airport manager, this information is given by https://www.aopa.org/destinations/airports/KCVH/details as a Mike Chambless.  We called the number on the site, but didn't talk to Mike, but another person (not sure if I am allowed to give names, never did get a last name anyway) answered and we informed them of our situation and desires, that we were looking to do some low altitude drone flying, under 100 feet.  I gave our address and said we were about 2.6 miles north of the airport.  At this point we were cutoff and they basically started chanting a mantra at us, "You cannot fly drones within 5 miles of an airport".  Any attempt at furthering the conversation just got those words repeated in a more hostile tone.  We were getting nowhere but upsetting this person so we hung up.


I have check airmaps and the dji flight restriction map https://www.dji.com/flysafe/geo-map and no both of those we are outside of the restricted areas marked on them.


I really don't want to get into a fight with my local airport, but it looks like they are outright denying any drone flight whatsoever in the area.  It was my understanding that I don't have to ask permission and only have to give notification, and that they could only outright ban it if it would pose a direct risk.  I don't know what to do when the other party is acting in this way though.


This place does not have a tower or air traffic control to my knowledge, so I don't think filing a flight plan with Airmap would constitute notification, I highly doubt this place is hooked up with LAANC or anything like that to actually RECEIVE the flightplan.  How does that work anyway?


Any suggestions?  I am wondering if I should just give up on drones since I mostly want to use them on our property.
2019-2-25
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snowbird pilot
Second Officer
United States
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what about emailing the mike guy? setting up a possible meeting? make sure you tell him you will be FAA registered and will you be commercial or recreational?
2019-2-25
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snowbird pilot
Second Officer
United States
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or call them again and ask to speak to the manager without mentioning drones first?
2019-2-25
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Mark The Droner
Captain
Flight distance : 2917 ft
United States
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From your description, it sounds to me like the airport manager or whoever you talked to is in error given the current regs (which are about to change any day).  It's likely he doesn't understand the rules/law.  All you have to do is notify them.  Once you do that, you can fly.  You apparently know this already.  

Yes, you should adhere to any advice they happen to give you because you are also bound to not endanger the NAS.  Nonetheless, provided you don't endanger, you can fly.  

Sounds to me, given your comments that you intend to keeping your AC at 100' AGL, you are perfectly legal to fly.  In fact, you should be commended for doing the correct thing and notifying them.  

MHO

Good luck

2019-2-25
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Alluvian
lvl.1
United States
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2-25 15:54
From your description, it sounds to me like the airport manager or whoever you talked to is in error given the current regs (which are about to change any day).  It's likely he doesn't understand the rules/law.  All you have to do is notify them.  Once you do that, you can fly.  You apparently know this already.  

Yes, you should adhere to any advice they happen to give you because you are also bound to not endanger the NAS.  Nonetheless, provided you don't endanger, you can fly.  

In theory, I think I am correct, but if in practice they keep saying 'no' it makes things pretty impossible to fly.  I am not exactly helped by this whole thing being a hypothetical as I don't HAVE a drone because I don't want to buy the drone if the answers are going to repeatedly be 'no'.

I don't get why trying to follow the rules is made so hard.
2019-2-25
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ALABAMA
Captain
Flight distance : 10422228 ft
United States
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It's not you, it's the airport guy.  Probably a mechanic or something.  How many planes do you see and how often?







2019-2-25
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Alluvian
lvl.1
United States
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ALABAMA Posted at 2-25 16:41
It's not you, it's the airport guy.  Probably a mechanic or something.  How many planes do you see and how often?

I work fairly far from home, but on the weekends and evenings when I am around (only see the sun at home on weekdays during the summer) I see maybe 1 plane per weekend.  There is very little activity.
There MUST be more activity that I just don't notice, but I hardly ever even realize the airport is there.
2019-2-25
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KenDuke
Second Officer
Flight distance : 50837 ft
United States
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The only places they can say NO to you now, is if you are at the ends of the run-ways.   They are now doing, whats called a Bow-Tie.  And Extend the runway's 5 miles.    Those are no fly zones now.  However, if you are outside that bow-tie, but are within the airports 5 mile zone, then, notification is all thats needed.
I'll Point you to Ken Heron.  Look him up on youtube.  Best guy on the net (in the states) about drone stuff.  And he's funny!!!!  Live Thursday Nights at 8PM ET.  Or catch his videos.  
2019-2-25
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olfart
lvl.2
United States
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Many small General Aviation airports in the USA have no on-site manager.  The "manager" is likely somebody on the city council who may or may not know anything about FAA regulations.  If the phone rings at these airports, it'll be answered by whoever happens to be there at the time, likely a local pilot.  Again, he's someone who knows little or nothing about FAA's drone regulations.  
2019-2-27
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