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What to do when Airports and Heliports don't want to play?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ryan Van Scotter, Aug 25, 2016.

  1. Ryan Van Scotter

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    What do you do when Airports and Heliports private or not don't want to play when it comes to flying your UAS within 5nm? Regardless if it is for recreation or commercial use some airfields just won't talk to you or never answer the phone.

    In my case, the private hunting land I have access to has areas that touch the 5 mile boundary of a couple small grass private runways. If I follow the letter of the law, I need to notify and coordinate my operations, but what constitutes notification? B4UFly is useless in the sense that it tells you about airports but provides no contact information. Usually I go onto AirNav and get the contact information but more often then not I don't get an answer, sometimes the number is no longer valid. So what's a flyer to do?

    Recently I was 4.8 miles from private hospital helipad. The helipad contact and owner phone number was the hospital, and I was passed around from person to person, but it seemed like nobody was willing to make a decision or discus it. Since the FAA requires an OWNER and MANAGER for the assignment of an ICAO identifier, does the airport have a fiduciary duty to be reachable?
     
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  2. Joet

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    I had that issue with a seaplane base near my house. I could never get anyone to answer the phone! I called the FAA and spoke to one of their sUAS folks, who told me that since I had made every effort possible to contact the airfield in question, I had done what was required. As it turns out, the "seaplane base" was some guy's house on a lake with a seaplane parked out back - not a formal airport by any means - and he had died last year in a crash.

    My only addition to just saying, "I did all I could!" was to log the time and date and the number that I called. It was listed on airnav.com.

    AirNav: Airport Information
     
  3. Ryan Van Scotter

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    Thanks for the info, that was next step to call he UAS integration desk and ask. Seems like key is due diligence, however with 107 we no longer file a NOTAM which would be helpful.
     
  4. Dave Armbrust

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    With Part 107 in effect on Monday you will no longer be required to contact a airport located in Class G airspace (Most non towered airports), unless you are operating under a Part 333 waiver or recreationally. As Part 333 operator or as a recreational operator you can choose to operate under Part 107 and abandon your waiver.

    You will be required to be a certified remote pilot to operate under Part 107.
     
  5. Ryan Van Scotter

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    That's a great point and makes life a bit easier. Undoubtedly, law enforcement will not fully understand the rules so it's always helpful to be armed with knowledge. Thanks Dave.
     
  6. Joet

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    Dave,

    Any insight as to how remote pilots are expected to contact ATC for permission to enter controlled airspace? I can't find any justification for use of a handheld VHF radio, so I am left to assume it's by telephone...
     
  7. Ryan Van Scotter

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    Lots of restrictions of what we do and how we do it, yet no tools to do what they ask.

    FAA UAS Segregation at its best. And the B4UFly app is worthless as well.
     
  8. Dave Armbrust

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    Telephone is fine, just call the tower. Give them a bearing and distance from the airport and maximum altitude you expect. Let them know you will call when you are done, and make sure you do not forget to call. As long as you are not in the approach or departure path for their main runway it should be a simple matter. They probably will thank you for calling.
     
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  9. Dave Armbrust

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    There are lots of tools now, but you need to look for aviation apps rather than from DJI, AMA or even the FAA.

    The popular apps are Foreflight, Wing X, Garmin and several others. Yes, they do cost money but they make it easy for you to know where you are at on a VFR Sectional. Everything is based on airspace and sectionals and they must be current. That is why you are now required to be certified. You must be able to demonstrate that you can actual use the standard aviation tools such as maps (sectionals).

    If you want low tech then buy and keep a current sectional, but you will then need to use lat and long to find your location on the sectional.

    The FAA has given you a great gift with class G airspace below 400' or within 400' of a structure, but you MUST know the difference between Class G (uncontrolled) and controlled airspace. (Just watch out for Helicopters as they use this same airspace.) Remember, you do not have the right away.
     
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  10. SanCap

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    Foreflight is a very powerful app and worth the money.
     
  11. SanCap

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    That is the beauty with having a 333. We are allowed to fly 2 nautical miles away from an airport without a tower or published instrument approach and 3 miles away from an airport with a published instrument approach but no tower. I will be using both the 333 and the 107 when needed. I am visiting a DPE to get my temporary 107 cert tomorrow.
     
  12. Dave Armbrust

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    For most it will make more sense to adandon the 333 with part 107 now in effect. Also the 333 will ever be renewed. Is there some reason that you still need the 333?

    If so you will need to get a 107 waiver, which they are estimating 90 days at this early date. You will need a 107 for night or beyond line of sight.
     
  13. SanCap

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    Why would I want to abandon my 333? I will wait till it expires or gets rescinded. I will still use it for the reasons I mentioned above, at certain airports I will not have to contact anyone just use the parameters listed in my 333's COA.
     
  14. Dave Armbrust

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    Most untowered airports are in Class G airspace, which you can now operate in without contacting the airport. You no longer need to send notice to the FSDO or to do a NOTAMS (unless you want to). Your 333 waiver, as are all 333 waivers, have many restrictions that go far and beyond the very few restrictions in Part 107.

    Remember the 333 waiver is overly restrictive in the name of safety. Now that we have some experience with drones Part 107 now removes most of these restrictions. A 15 year old pimple face kid, with a temporary remote pilot certificate in his hand can do far more tomorrow with far less restrictions that you can do today. Not saying is is right, just that this is now the case.

    If you look at your 333 waiver request and the grant you will see that you have been exempted from many of the regulations that apply to manned aircraft. Those regulations have now been expanded to incorporate unmanned aircraft.

    Do not just assume that your waiver allows you to do more than what Part 107 allows. Unless you have one of the very few night waivers, or a waiver for a closed movie set, it probably does not.

    Those 2 and 3 mile restrictions that you are boosting about are totally gone in Part 107. You are no longer restricted to 2 or 3 miles unless you choose to continue to operate under you waiver.
     
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  15. SanCap

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    Thanks Dave.