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and another: flying 1 mile from small airport

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Richard-Inspire, May 9, 2016.

  1. Richard-Inspire

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    following on from my previous question about sensible flying:

    There is a location that I like to fly and shoot some sports activity. I won't mention it here because I don't want other people who have flown there (commercially) to get in trouble. It is a little over 1.4 miles from the end of the runway to the closet point where I would typically fly. I would expect to be less than 30m height.

    The area is not listed in the DJI app as a no fly zone, and in the noflydrones.co.uk website, it shows up saying:

    The round blue areas on the map indicate Aerodrome Traffic Zones, they surround smaller airports and aerodromes that do not have additional controlled airspace. Other areas of blue identify Controlled Airspace. If you are operating a drone above 7kg you must not fly in these areas without prior permission from the air traffic service provider controlling that airspace.If you are under 7kg, it is still strongly advised to notify the air traffic service provider of your activity.
    I have been at events there where CAA registered companies have filmed and promoted events and their own work. I assume, therefore, that they had permission to do so, but I wouldn't be staggered to discover they had not notified air traffic services that they were doing so.

    I'd love to know the official advice here, as pertains to a) a regular user, willing to adhere to restrictions and b) a commercial operator, and what they'd have to do to safely film there and also c) if anyone has experience of having notified ATC about this kind of thing, what the response was?

    thanks,

    Richard
     
  2. The Editor

    The Editor Moderator
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    It would all depend on the location in question.
    You cannot rely on DJI Fly Zone notation as this is a self elected database of where they 'think' you should or should not be able to fly. It holds absolutely no gravitas in air Navigation or law.
    The only way you can really ascertain exactly what class of airspace this particular area is designated as is to use either a UK air chart or one of the downloadable apps that allows approved air space Navigation plates to be overlaid.
    If you want to PM me the long/lat I can have a look for you.
     
  3. Richard-Inspire

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    thanks I will do that.
     
  4. Simon Mallin

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    Richard,

    I have flown (commercially) on the edge of a NFZ (and within an ATZ), about 600m from the end of the runway. I generally stay well clear of airports but this was a fairly quiet (though still commercial) airport so although under my PFAW I am allowed to fly there, I spoke to the local ATC in advance of agreeing to take the work and much to my delight they didn't flag up any problems. I explained that I was using a sub 7kg UAV and my ceiling would be 30m AGL. I gave my details and was asked to contact the Watch Manager the day before operations to confirm timings.

    I duly called (no problems) and was asked to call back again the next day once I was ready to start flying, just as a final precaution. I made the call, got the 'All Clear' and was then asked just to let them know once I had finished. I had a spotter keeping a constant lookout for any aircraft with the intention of landing if we heard/saw one but there were no movements while I was flying.

    The ATC were really very obliging and I thought rather trusting throughout, it just seemed to be a routine thing. I suggest you speak to the ATC as it doesn't hurt to establish a relationship and build their trust in you being a responsible UAV pilot.

    Simon
     
  5. Richard-Inspire

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    thanks Simon. I will do that. Turns permission is required in this area, so I hope that the fact that a commercial outfit has filmed there at an official event is some kind of precedent that it is possible when done correctly.

    I find it hilarious that you can call up the ATC tower - hopefully it's not the person guiding in a landing plane that answers the phone!
     
  6. Simon Mallin

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    Ha - let's hope not.

    Good luck. Maybe you can let us know how you get on.
     
  7. tweaker

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    Yes exactly same here. All dealings I have had with ATC have been 100%professional and bang on.
    ATC are on side with UAV pilots.
     
  8. GizaDog

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    That is always good news. Now, its trying to open up stadiums to fly in when asked.