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AMA vs FAA...

Old 12-27-2010, 08:55 PM
  #126  
NJSwede
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Originally Posted by Murocflyer View Post
Thanks NJSwede,
Frank
You're welcome. That being said, it's definitely possible that the AMA is planning some elaborate scheme to take over the world. But the point I'm making is that there's nothing in the documentation I've seen so far that indicates that.

Again, I just got into the hobby and know absolutely nothing about the AMA. But I'm thinking of joining them, as there's an AMA sanctioned field some 20 miles from my home...
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:02 PM
  #127  
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Originally Posted by NJSwede View Post
You're welcome. That being said, it's definitely possible that the AMA is planning some elaborate scheme to take over the world. But the point I'm making is that there's nothing in the documentation I've seen so far that indicates that.

Again, I just got into the hobby and know absolutely nothing about the AMA. But I'm thinking of joining them, as there's an AMA sanctioned field some 20 miles from my home...

Ssshhh. That is the plan.




I wish you all the best with your new club and I hope yours is as enjoyable as my is. I have met a lot of great guys who have taught me so much about this sport.

Frank
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:16 PM
  #128  
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The $1.3M suit occured in 2003.

"$1,350,000 recovery in a defective product case where a model airplane caused a leg fracture. Plaintiff, a 48 year old United Airlines pilot when he was struck by a high speed model airplane being clocked for speed at a sanctioned competition of the Academy of Model Aeronautics at Whittier Narrows. The crash of the model airplane and the injuries to plaintiff were caused by faulty construction, faulty pre-flight inspection, and the failure to conduct such races in protected fenced arenas. In addition, the standard AMA pre-flight pull test is believed to have caused the failure of fuselage bolts which caused the plane to fly out of control at a speed of 184 m.p.h. Because he was a co-participant in the racing competition and had started the doomed aircraft, the Academy claimed the plaintiff assumed the risk of this injury, although this was the first known case of such an injury occurring. Assumption of risk is a complete defense in recreational activities under recent decisions of California courts. Because of a non-union of the tibia and fibula, eleven medical procedures were required at a cost of $220,000. Fortunately plaintiff returned to return to work as a pilot. Armstead v. Academy of Model Aeronautics, Alameda County Superior Court No. H-150430-1 settled before Hon. Daniel Weinstein, retired judge of the Superior Court, Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Service."
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:28 PM
  #129  
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As if our AMA leadership is a bunch of saints.
Get real.
You think the FAA is out to stop modelers from having fun but that a handful of amateurs running the AMA are above trying to increase membership by forcing everyone to join the AMA?
Why do you think they force an MA subscription with membership? Because they can't sell it any other way. Demonstrates that if they can't get what they want through free will they will get by force.
And I am the one you all think is deluded?
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:38 PM
  #130  
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Originally Posted by Murocflyer View Post
All I ask is that you get your facts straight before making false claims and accusations. You have done that a number of times here this evening and it serves no one any useful purpose in doing so.
So the ARC Documents are frauds and you aren't on the AMA Strategic Task Force, Chair of the AMA Leader Member Program Development Committee and AMA Forum moderator?

Seems that anyone with a different opinion than yours is liar.
Not sure why the moderators here are letting you call me liar.
Seems some are allowed to break all the rules.
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Old 12-27-2010, 10:07 PM
  #131  
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If Section 2 allows for non-AMA members to fly using AMA rules then why was Section 3 even put in there?

Answer: Section 2 requires AMA membership. That is why the AMA wants to "Eliminate Section 3 in its entirety"*. Thus non AMA members can not fly... period. Pay the AMA or don't fly is the AMA's recommendation on top of page six of the ARC document.

*That is the AMA's words in the ARC Document, not mine.
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Old 12-27-2010, 10:47 PM
  #132  
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This thread is no longer serving a useful purpose. Closed.

And if this topic is brought up again in a new thread, everyone is hereby warned to keep the personal attacks out of it.
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:49 AM
  #133  
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Thread has been reopened. Hopefully it will no longer be derailed like it was the past few days.

Open forum discussion is fine, and even encouraged here at WattFlyer. However, personal attacks and name calling is not. Please lets keep this thread civil or it will be closed again.

For the time being, please do not respond to any comments by dbcisco that do not apply to the thread topic. That issue has been handled.

Thanks!
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Old 12-29-2010, 01:10 AM
  #134  
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Thanks for re-opening this thread Pat. I think there is still some important info that needs to be shared.

For those interested. Here is the time and place for the Q&A with the FAA.

• AMA & FAA Discussion Forum Saturday at 2:00 pm in Room 103. Join AMA and FAA leadership in a discussion forum regarding potential regulations on model aircraft. Open to members. Seating limited.

Frank
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Old 12-29-2010, 05:25 AM
  #135  
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Just a quick comment on a previous post. This is something that very frequently is misstated in posts. The AMA Sanctions Contests, Charters Clubs, and publishes recommendations on field layout and safe operation. It does not, and as far as I know never has sanctioned a field.
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Old 12-29-2010, 06:34 PM
  #136  
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Originally Posted by 50+AirYears View Post
It does not, and as far as I know never has sanctioned a field.
But the indirect effect, is that fields run by AMA affiliate clubs routinely bar non-members of AMA from flying at their fields. It is the same effect as if the AMA itself controlled them directly.

It's not as if a club doesn't have the right to control its property in any way it desires. That is their legitimate right. But it is ironic that the primary effect of an organization purportedly dedicated to popularization of flying model airplanes is to lock people out of participating in the hobby unless they are willing to pony up the ransom.

The finest effect of electric park flier RC planes has been to liberate those of us who resent the elitist bent of the AMA and many of its affiliate clubs. We can fly in more convenient places than they have with planes specifically designed not to need their facilities. We are the ones really popularizing RC flying, able to operate in neighborhoods and cities who have long ago ejected the AMA clubs from their territory. Without us outlaws most of the companies producing electric RC equipment could not exist as the AMA shrinks and shrinks because it remains blind to its shortcomings.

The AMA has become like the American Medical Association or many unions, whose modus operandi is to restrict access to their professions in order to raise the income and prestige of those who currently practice.

I think the language used by the AMA quoted above shows that even some of them realize that restricting the fliers outside the AMA would result in crippling their own organization. I take them at their word that they don't wish to force anyone to join, as they have some level of comprehension that their reputation among non-members is elitist as I stated above. And they realize that their existence is dependent on the body of non-member RC fliers. When and if we ever see an actual positive benefit and value to joining the AMA, we will do so. But people not interested in RC will never join.

The AMA depends on us outlaws for future prosperity and maybe for its very survival. You'd think they would treat us as better than second class trash to be barred from their presence, or offered a crippled "membership" with no voice in their proceedings. Sitting in the back of the bus didn't work before, why would they think it is a great strategy now?
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Old 12-29-2010, 06:51 PM
  #137  
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Originally Posted by Rockin Robbins View Post
But the indirect effect, is that fields run by AMA affiliate clubs routinely bar non-members of AMA from flying at their fields. It is the same effect as if the AMA itself controlled them directly.

It's not as if a club doesn't have the right to control its property in any way it desires. That is their legitimate right. But it is ironic that the primary effect of an organization purportedly dedicated to popularization of flying model airplanes is to lock people out of participating in the hobby unless they are willing to pony up the ransom.
It is not a nefarious as you point out.

Our lease for example is with the Army Corp of Engineers. They require liability protection as a part of our lease agreement. AMA provides this for the landowners, but they want to assure that people are not using the field in an unsafe manner. So they require those who use the side to also be covered by AMA and the safety code we agree too.

Without this landowner protection, we would be screwed, as most land owners require this. In fact when the Army Corps does checks, they show up unannounced and ask to see everyone's AMA card. We are legally required (as a provision of our lease) to have those who fly have AMA insurance, so the landowner protection is in place.

Now AMA is not the only agency willing to do that, but it certainly is convenient. As a guy who has tried to secure sites for flying this is no small task and may don't want the liability for an activity they consider to be somewhat dangerous. So hard to get "other" coverage.

Our field in fact wont even allow AMA park insurance and the liability limits are not high enough.

So nobody is forcing anyone, it is all a part of the agreements.

Mike
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Old 12-29-2010, 06:56 PM
  #138  
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Very interesting. I wonder how my astronomy club meets the same requirements without the necessity of barring people without individual insurance from the property? It's because the club owns the insurance, which covers anyone who engages in club activities, regardless of their individual coverage. We routinely invite the public to participate in our activities without any problems at all.

I'm not implying that the restrictions are nefarious in any way. They are merely a short-sighted and counterproductive. Yes, they keep existing fliers protected. They also keep others from overcoming the financial and skill barriers to entering our hobby. You can't ask for commitment before demonstrating value. That results in no commitments.

I would argue that the only reason that we have all this great electric flying equipment is that they allow us to ignore the AMA and enter the hobby at an acceptable level of investment to allow newbies to learn to enjoy the hobby. Only THEN can people decide that they would like to fly larger, faster, more expensive and complicated equipment that might benefit from what the AMA has to offer. Without "outlaws" the AMA just becomes a last man standing club where the last geezer to die just shuts out the lights.
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Old 12-29-2010, 07:09 PM
  #139  
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Same here. My local field is owned by the county and if you want to fly you have to have AMA insurance. If the AMA insurance was not available the field would not exist. So I see the AMA as definitely promoting and enabling flight and not limiting it in any way. It's about liability and you can't blame the AMA for that. If telescopes were prone to taking flight and knocking into people and property I'm sure it would be harder to find insurance for astronomy clubs.
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Old 12-29-2010, 07:50 PM
  #140  
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Believe me, a bunch of harmless looking telescopes have very effective ways of inflicting injury. They are used in the dark, you know, ideally with no lights nearby. They can also amplify the intensity of normally harmless sources of light into something that could damage vision permanently.

There is a need for an organization such as the AMA to provide for the more advanced aspects of flying model airplanes. But it is essential that the "outlaw" portion of the hobby is protected, nourished and valued. Unless the hobby as a whole prospers, the AMA cannot live.

In any hobby organization there is a continual struggle between those who see it as a mechanism to separate the superior "us" from the inferior "them," lending "us" with prestige and glory, and those who see the organization as a mechanism for growth of the hobby. The problem with growth is that those presently in control of the organization become outnumbered by the newcomers and transfer of responsibility inevitably takes place. Therefore the motivation of office holders can become to protect "us" against "them." They see themselves as the only possible guardians of their chosen interest, and so erecting barriers to entry becomes justifiable. Failing that, opening membership to new people while denying any voting rights is very attractive. These restrictive actions must be supported by reasonable sounding excuses.

Rationalizations are very effective within an organization but tend to be very transparent to those without.
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Old 12-29-2010, 09:02 PM
  #141  
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I get it - you make good points, but the nature of RC flying makes landowners a bit more concerned than tripping over a tripod.

And I understand that my club could get the liability coverage needed outside of AMA. Totally get it, but AMA is easier, and offers a great deal more than insurance.

The public - again are covered by AMA. In fact many times law suits filed are by spectators at AMA events. It is very hard to find landowners willing to allow their private lands for the use of an RC club without being indemnified or protected in some way.

At any rate - I do have a voice in AMA, and I am sure glad they are there to protect the real FAA threat to our hobby. I don't have the ability to meet with the FAA, but AMA does, and you better believe I have talked with my DVP about how I feel. Your DVP I bet will listen to you also.

You view is very different that my own.

Mike
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Old 12-30-2010, 01:29 AM
  #142  
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Let's remember that this thread is about the AMA's concerns with the FAA proposed rules. There are already plenty of AMA vs Non-AMA threads out there to argue the good and bad points about the organization.
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Old 12-30-2010, 02:15 AM
  #143  
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Point taken. I don't see anything wrong with the AMA's positions in reference to FAA regulations at all. To my way of thinking they have said and done the things that bring credit and trust their way from all modelers. Given the clear and open invitation to transition from hobby advocate to some kind of ruling body they have firmly rejected the possibility. That seems clear from their stance. I don't understand the earlier catastrophizing on that point as there is nothing the AMA could have said to make their stance any clearer. I take my hat off to them in that regard.
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:30 AM
  #144  
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Check out the webcast.
http://www.jetpilots.org/

Message from the President and the JPO Board

This is a JPO update on the current discussions between the FAA and the AMA on potential regulations impacting model aviation. This update is based upon an ongoing dialog that the JPO is having with Dave Mathewson, our latest exchange having occurred 12/7.

First, let me repeat that I have never gotten the impression that Dave or the AMA Executive Committee feel the turbine community is unimportant, despite our relatively small size. They have discussed and supported turbines openly with the FAA and are always responsive to my calls and emails. I will tell you it is my personal opinion that the turbine community is very fortunate to have this leadership team in place at the AMA during these times.

So here is a recap of what I know at this point.

1) The FAA continues (by law) to keep the specifics of the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) private, however, it is clear that several issues will be important to them including speed, altitude, size of model and proximity to full scale operations. While various numbers and alternatives have been batted about, what the FAA will ultimately recommend in the NPRM is far from certain.

2) While the NPRM is not due to be published until next summer, the AMA continues to meet with the FAA almost weekly in the hope that current dialog and education of FAA officials on our modeling operations will result in a more realistic and workable NPRM. This strategy makes a lot of sense and should be more collaborative than simply waiting for the NPRM and then responding in a defensive fashion.

3) You should expect that the FAA discussions will run hot and cold. Part of the issue is that the leadership at the FAA has changed multiple times. In the early fall, discussions hit a low point, but there are signs that things may be turning around. The latest round of meetings have been more collaborative, an FAA official with modeling experience is engaging positively in the process, and the FAA has accepted an invitation to participate in the AMA Expo in January ... all signs we should find encouraging.

4) As I mentioned earlier, the AMA and FAA have openly discussed turbines and at this point, there is no indication that the FAA intends on prohibiting turbine operations under the auspices of the AMA. In fact, the waiver program has been held out as a positive component of the AMA's overall safety record.

5) As Dave and Rich Hanson have pointed out, there may come a time where certain aspects of the final NPRM simply would be detrimental to our hobby (or business), and at that point the membership will be asked to support a lobbying effort. We are not there yet. As a precautionary measure, the AMA has also engaged a lobbyist to advise us should this become a legislative issue and to help open the door to elected representatives if needed.

6) The AMA will step up communications efforts with its membership in coming months. The JPO is working with the AMA on a potential webcast specifically for our SIG members to let us hear first hand about the latest developments in the FAA discussions.... another indication of the AMA's support of our community.

7) Right now, the NPRM is not due out until June 2011 at the earliest, though the FAA has the ability to modify its release date. If this happens I will publish an update.

While the process continues to wind its way to a conclusion, I would encourage everyone to fly safely, abide by and encourage others to abide by the regulations, and please don't spread misinformation. There is no reason to believe at this point that the FAA will do anything to prohibit our operations.
Happy holidays to all from me and the rest of the JPO officers.

Thanks,

Keith Sievers, President
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:45 AM
  #145  
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Thanks again for the updates.
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Old 01-10-2011, 07:40 PM
  #146  
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So did anyone attend the FAA/AMA discussion? Very curious.....

Mike
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:42 PM
  #147  
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
So did anyone attend the FAA/AMA discussion? Very curious.....

Mike
Yes, Nitro Jr, Hirdcflyer and myself attended. I recorded it to review again, but for the most part, there was not much more than 'dont ruffle your feathers' and a lot of "Imperial Federation of Government" (heard in the crowd) happy speak.

I did manage to get a plug in for Wattflyer too! You were allowed to pre-write questions handed out on 3x5 cards. About a hundred questions were submitted, and only 3 read. One mine.

Lesson to you all, if you want to get your point across, start with a compliment. One of the things they asked you to do was put your name and where you are from at the bottom of the card. WRONG, I put mine at the top.

My question verbatim, my comments in ( ):

JIM FROM WATTFLYER.COM ASKS: (Thats how I got the AMA president to say wattflyer dot com)

AMA members are safe flyers (complimenting his assiociation and members)



What is going to be the position of the FAA on enforcement to non AMA members?


The reply was the same for AMA members. "We are not going to be stationing 'airport police' at RC model fields, but we will respond to submitted complaints". Fair enough I guess.

I'll review the audio and post a more concise report on the meeting, which was SRO, an overflow crowd.
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:03 PM
  #148  
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Originally Posted by Nitro Blast View Post
About a hundred questions were submitted, and only 3 read. One mine.


How many people would you say were there?

3% is a pretty low number of questions answered.
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:23 PM
  #149  
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Originally Posted by FlyingMonkey View Post
How many people would you say were there?

3% is a pretty low number of questions answered.

Probably 100~150 seated, and the rest standing. The convention center tried to bring in more chairs but it limited standing room so they only added a few.

They ran long on their own talking points, thats why they only read a few questions. Thinking about it, there may have been as many as 5 read, but I think only because they put two together due to having the same answer two times. Maybe 5 questions, 3 replies? I'll review the tape.


The talks simply ran long, and the point was made over and over:

a) AMA considers all aspects of the hobby equally important.
b) There will a NRPM (notice of proposed rule making) that the FAA is working with the AMA to define.
c) If you have concerns over rules, put them in writing to the AMA. Let AMA and the FAA know what you want out of your hobby.


Yes, the FAA officials several times declined to reply to direct questions because they are apparently not allowed to discuss the NPRM before it is released. All fine and well, but it did seem to be a difficult reply to understand because folks kept wanting to ask the same darn questions that they had several times stated they could not comment. Sheez folks, LISTEN to the replies.

2013 is going to be the soonest anything could be handed to a RC modeler that may not have something in it they like. Will it stop you from being a RC modeler? Unlikely. Will it impose a certification, regulation, licensing process beyond what we are already doing? Comment could not be made.

Will it stop Joe Bootleg from going out in the middle of nowhere to do WTF ever he wants? No way. Do they expect to end all terrorsim by regulating Radio Control Hobbies? No. They expect that professional agencies that are now doing more and more unmanned aerial services will have regulation and rules regarding operation. Will those regulations include Radio Control hobby operations? It pretty much has to.
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:44 PM
  #150  
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Interesting, I figured nothing groundbreaking.
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