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Inspire flying around an uncontrolled airport
2185 12 2015-3-9
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kmedmd
lvl.1

United States
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In AK there are an amazing amount of small aircraft hubs. Add to that, endless gravel bars, lakes, rivers, etc. that act as bush plane landing and take off areas.  I can't help but think that it is going to take a lot of common sense over actual regulations/rules to prevent accidents here.  I am a new Inspire owner, and I am also a Cessna pilot.  I have one toe in each world and in certain scenarios I find myself torn, in terms of what I think should be "regulated" when it comes to these things.  Today I realized that regardless of rules, or even common sense, there will still be those who will do what they wish, no matter the safety concerns.  I watched a new Inspire fly around just below the pattern altitude of a small aircraft Seaplane base today, and it gave me a sinking sense of illness.  I have set up to land on that very path several times. The pilot left before I had the chance to chat with him, so I thought to post here:  If you were the guy flying your Inspire along the North side of Campbel Lake today (an active Seaplane base), please consider the risks involved with what you were doing, the lives you put in jeopardy, and next time, fly elsewhere.
On a lighter note, what ideas do others have about helping to curb scenarios such as these?  Minimum distances away from aircraft, self-reporting of drone flight activity via Common Traffic Advisory Frequencies (CTAF) when near any uncontrolled airport?

Thanks









2015-3-9
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Dangair
Second Officer

Canada
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I fly ultralights and have an airstrip off my back yard which is used by small aircraft and occasionally helicopters ( medivac and rcmp ) I fly my Inspire and other remote control aircraft on this strip daily. I understand the reason for this ( fear ) of a drone ( I hate that definition ) UAV or rc aircraft striking an aircraft but it is unfounded in some cases. Our field has a clear line of sight and is not a tower controlled airstrip. All pilots are required to fly over the airstrip to ensure the strip is clear and give warning to those on the strip to clear immediately. There is plenty of time for an Inspire pilot to recover his aircraft and vacate the strip. Even if you can't get off the strip fast enough to land you can always ditch. Never have I had a close call, ever. Most inspire pilots don't fly at altitude, there really is no benefit in doing so, the best shots are low and slow anyways.  That said if any pilot has concerns for me flying my ( drone ) on the strip they can let me know. And we can discuss other options for them to land somewhere else!
2015-3-9
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kmedmd
lvl.1

United States
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Dangair, do you believe that rc aircraft should be allowed to fly routinely from/to/around all airports, or just in special cases (such as uncontrolled airstrips)?  How do you feel about the 5 mile radius guideline?  
2015-3-11
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joe
lvl.4

United States
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I think altitude and distance should be considered. For  a short distance around the airport no flying should be allowed unless airport permission is granted.  5 miles I see as a bit overkill for no flight zone. Maybe a mile for small airports without towers.  A 400 to 500 height limit for what we in the US call class G airspace. within 5 miles would be reasonable though.  No aircraft pilot should be flying below this altitude normally even in pattern.  No UAV should be flown in controlled airspace either until there are systems in place of unless under the control of a airport.

All pilots should have situational awareness and react to a aircraft approaching.  From my experience there is plenty of time to react to oncoming aircraft but if one is not in the landing
2015-3-11
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rfrye
Second Officer
Flight distance : 309606 ft
United States
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knedmd,

Thanks for your input. I'm a commercially rated pilot myself. Have been for a half a century. In addition to flying the C-182 - I love my Inspire-1,equally.

I've read all the posts to your new thread. First thing we need to do is approach it much like we do driving on our highways. Driving is NOT a right - it's a privilege. Sharing airspace is no different. First, we shouldn't consider that anybody owns the airspace...we all get to share it in a safe, reasonable fashion. The more arguments we have on this concept - the more regulations there will be.

My very respectful advice - we all need to be careful about laying claims to airspace or the FAA will take claim to all of it (in the U.S). Whether it be UAS, UAV, or  drone - we will have growing pains. How we conduct ourselves, in and out of the air, will have a great deal to do with how much pain we experience.

For a large part, all of the flying community will chart their own destiny. The FAA will react accordingly and consciously error to the safe side.
2015-3-11
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daninperth
lvl.4

United States
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rfrye Posted at 2015-3-12 02:13
knedmd,

Thanks for your input. I'm a commercially rated pilot myself. Have been for a half a centur ...

Well said!  It's going to take common sense.  But judging from some of the more recent events near controlled airports alone...sense isn't so common these days.  And then there are those who actually enjoy the idea of chaos. Hopefully there are fewer of them than it would appear.
2015-3-11
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kmedmd
lvl.1

United States
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rfrye Posted at 2015-3-12 02:13
knedmd,

Thanks for your input. I'm a commercially rated pilot myself. Have been for a half a centur ...

rfrye, thanks for your comments and insight.  I agree with the idea to work towards harmonious sharing v.s. fighting over airspace. Your highway/airspace analogy has merit.  What does reasonable sharing in the air look like to you?

2015-3-11
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rfrye
Second Officer
Flight distance : 309606 ft
United States
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kmedmd@me.com Posted at 2015-3-12 05:24
rfrye, thanks for your comments and insight.  I agree with the idea to work towards harmonious sha ...


Good Doctor.

Even though we can influence the FAA in their decisions on the new regs., they WILL have the final word in the U.S. Since you are also a pilot, you know this will be true.

What's it look like to me? I can be very specific about that.
When flying the Cessna I don't want to see a UAS anywhere near me.
When flying my UAS - I don't want to see an airplane anywhere near me.

"Margin-of-safety" is almost everything. Qualifying this margin is where the debate begins.

As a pilot for 50 years - believe me - I know how fast sh_t can happen. It's less than a blink of the eye. 'Blink your eye quick'  - THAT FAST!

Nothing is more important than safety and common sense. I suspect many on this forum also have thousands of hours in the air. I'm all for qualified certification. Who wouldn't be?

I'm not looking for an argument on this and won't engage in one.
You asked for my opinion - and that's exactly what I just laid out here.

I do know that an "attitude" about the above will be counter productive to both segments of those sharing airspace.
2015-3-11
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kmedmd
lvl.1

United States
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Thanks for your opinion. In my mind, someone with 50 years of flying under his belt sharing insight like that is valuable, and a good way for others without the years to avoid mistakes. Keep it coming. Thanks.
2015-3-11
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wolftj
lvl.4
Flight distance : 109734 ft
United States
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Well, this thread sure went better than the last one I started about flying around my home airport. Glad to see less emotion and more thought. As a current Mooney driver with only about 1600 hours and a pending ATP rating I applaud the conversation, as it needs to happen before the FAA has it in a back room and let's us all know what they think by regulation.

I completely agree with rfrye about other air traffic while you're flying. I have a lot of very expensive electronic gear in my plane to tell me where all the other aircraft around me are at all times. Unless your drone has a transponder or ADS-B transmitter all that gear will never see it, will never be able to warn me it's there. It's so difficult to see another aircraft, even a relatively large one, while flying I would think it somewhere between unlikely and impossible to see a drone in time to react and not hit it, if control input was required to prevent a collision.

It is not a good feeling knowing someone is close without being able to see them. When you are moving at a mile every 20 seconds it doesn't take long to close what seems like a large gap. I can almost feel that experience coming from rfrye's words. It's a somewhat sickening feeling.

My home airport where I have flown my Inspire and my Phantom is uncontrolled, a single runway just over 3000'  and a single taxiway. When I fly I talk to the airport manager beforehand, have my handheld radio on CTAF and announce my flight as if I was sitting in my Bravo. I don't fly more than 100' AGL and stay over the ramp primarily. I never fly over the runway or the extended centerline of either runway.  Anyone shows up in the pattern or on the radio, I land first then talk to them if I know them, which I often do. Usually they are excited about the prospect of getting an aerial shot of their plane flying, and I tell them exactly where the bird will be when shooting them.

What many don't seem to realize is there are lots of airports, lot's of airspace that's not at all like the Class B, C, or D airspace surrounding most major US airports you see in the news. There's tons of airports that aren't really even big enough to service even the smallest jets, where people are intimately familiar with the airport, it's surrounding, and it's pilots. I would venture to say there may be more of these small airports than the big ones that have everyone in a panic.

We as pilots have to be safe and be smart. If you are flying a drone you are a pilot, whether you have a license or not. Act like a smart pilot, keep everyone else safe first and foremost. There's plenty of good info about airspace on the web from the FAA, EAA, AOPA, Sporty's... tons of stuff that's free or cheap to run on your iPad. If you like flying your drone so much you owe it to yourself to try flying something you can sit in! Join the AOPA and schedule a discovery flight at your local airport. It will change your life!
2015-3-11
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Dangair
Second Officer

Canada
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kmedmd@me.com Posted at 2015-3-12 01:01
Dangair, do you believe that rc aircraft should be allowed to fly routinely from/to/around all airpo ...

No, I'm good with the radius thing for airports that are used for commerce and may have heavy usage. But if you read the rules for pilots such as powered aircraft shall give way to gliders etc. so right of way should be given to all aircraft with people on board. Don't need a degree to figure that one out. That said, some people really shouldn't fly or drive anything. I like the airport fail safe thing though. Passenger aircraft should never have to be at risk for a collision with a wayward unmanned aircraft. This is the largest concern, UAV's do go funky despite the technology and the risk to jet aircraft sucking one into a turbine is too high. Our airstrip does not get the amount of traffic to warrant a no fly zone for hobbyists. All we asks is that at the first sign of an approaching aircraft you must ground your rig and clear the field.
2015-3-11
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Colonel Angus
Second Officer

United States
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rfrye Posted at 2015-3-12 02:13
knedmd,

Thanks for your input. I'm a commercially rated pilot myself. Have been for a half a centur ...

MOst agrred!
2015-3-11
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archer02
lvl.2

United States
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Living on an airpark sub we have the same rule as Dangair with a plane comes into the pattern bring it down and clear. Some will do a straight in approach that can be hard to see at times and even have a radio with you, there are those that don't announce their arrival. Our runways have obstructions to not see either runways but safety is #1. If you think the cost of an Inspire 1 is expensive replace a piece of wing or windshield. When flying on our airpark it will be use extreme caution and keep out hobby safe to last with one or two accidents will be all it will take to end it.
2015-3-13
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