City Ordinance states no flying in city parks. So....

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City of Seattle has an ordinance that states no model airplanes/UAVs may be flown in city parks. So what does that mean?

I can't fly above a city park? At what altitude? 5 feet off the ground? 100 ft.? 300ft.?
or does it mean I can't launch from? land? control from? a park

I know the FAA controls the airspace, but in theory, where does that begin? If it begins as soon as you are 1" off the ground then I will fly "in" the parks. I will just stand on the sidewalk and takeoff/recover there.

thoughts?

If you are familiar with Seattle... most of the beaches are park lands. And our parks up here are big.... really big. So in order to find open space to fly near the city, the safer place is the parks.

City law prohibits drones and other remote-controlled aircraft in parks (SMC 18.12.265)
 
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Technically if you launch from somewhere other than the park, then fly over you are ok as long as its not controlled airspace. there are quite a few members from your area, you might hit them up for good places to fly.
 
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Sorry to hear that but face facts, someone or more than one caused it with their behavior. Look at all the stupid things people post on youtube flying drones as an example.


We as a community must police our own ranks if we hope to move forward.
 
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Sorry to hear that but face facts, someone or more than one caused it with their behavior. Look at all the stupid things people post on youtube flying drones as an example.


We as a community must police our own ranks if we hope to move forward.
most of these bans/restrictions predate consumer UAVs
 
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OK simpler...safety and liability.

Someone hits a person in the head with a drone...a flyaway, lots can go wrong with people on the ground in the park.

Nobody likes or wants to understand when others don't want you to do your thing, no matter what it is. But you have understand, the city is responsible for the people in it. I don't see how they could allow it and not be held liable for anyone that is injured on their property.

This is the world we live in now. They are covering their butts.
 
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Municipalities can control the ground but not the air above it. Even at one inch off the ground, that is FAA controlled, as it is NAS.

Municipalities can state that no take-offs and landings are allowed in certain areas (e.g. city-owned parks). However, you can stand outside the entrance to a park, launch, and fly over it as long as all other regulations are followed--don't fly over unprotected humans, stay under 400', follow any airspace class rules, permission if launching from private property, etc.
 
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Municipalities can control the ground but not the air above it. Even at one inch off the ground, that is FAA controlled, as it is NAS.

Municipalities can state that no take-offs and landings are allowed in certain areas (e.g. city-owned parks). However, you can stand outside the entrance to a park, launch, and fly over it as long as all other regulations are followed--don't fly over unprotected humans, stay under 400', follow any airspace class rules. etc.

Exactly how I interpret this. Seattle Parks have vague wording for a reason... to scare off uneducated operators.
 
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Take of from outside the park. Don't fly over anyone.


Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
 
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I just got a message from Seattle Parks Public Information office and they stated I can not fly over the park or be in the park. I'm calling her back tomorrow to have more discussions with her about airspace and I'll cite the case in LA County Superior court where the City of Los Angeles lost it's fight against the same sort of law.
 
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I just got a message from Seattle Parks Public Information office and they stated I can not fly over the park...
Again, the FAA states that a city does not control the airspace above anything (parks included). As long as you are not in violation of any other regulations and launch from outside a park (again, on legal ground), you should be legal.

If there are no unprotected people in the park, you are obeying airspace class, staying under 400', not invading anyone's expectation of privacy, yadda, yadda, you should be legal.

That's not to say the city could cite you for excessive noise, disturbing the peace, etc.

Let us know how it goes!
 
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Keep in mind that even if you "Can" fly over the park area you might be opening up a can of worms you would rather not. Local Law Enforcement has been notified by memo that only the FAA can control Airspace but if the flight creates a safety concern to John Q. Public local authorities can and do have the ability to arrest/fine for that. Public endangerment is a VERY subjective term and odds are you'll lose that battle every time unless you're REALLY good (As in a good attorney).

Even though you might win the battle odds are you'll lose the war and cause more harm to yourself and our industry than good.
 
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Well I'm of the opposite opinion. I'm not saying you should be reckless but I see nothing wrong with flying where you are legally allowed to fly. If you can't fly from the park that's fine don't... but they do not control airspace in the US. I would fly wherever I could legally fly. It might create some ruffled feathers but in the end it will lead to understanding. I know some here are of the opinion that conflict, even when you are right, is bad for our hobby. Not me, I think as long as you are within the rules fly it. Don't be a tool about it but fly it.
 
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Keep in mind that even if you "Can" fly over the park area you might be opening up a can of worms you would rather not. Local Law Enforcement has been notified by memo that only the FAA can control Airspace but if the flight creates a safety concern to John Q. Public local authorities can and do have the ability to arrest/fine for that. Public endangerment is a VERY subjective term and odds are you'll lose that battle every time unless you're REALLY good (As in a good attorney).

Even though you might win the battle odds are you'll lose the war and cause more harm to yourself and our industry than good.
You assume that local law enforcement has received a memo from a federal agency and that every officer has read that memo and understands it? Highly doubt it. Yes they can cite for anything they want. But that doesn't mean it is legal or that they aren't overstepping their jurisdiction. Winning small battles is what gets laws and the "status quo" to change. It's what eventually wins a war. Now I don't see this as a war, just using your terms, but I do see it as education. Large cities like Seattle or Los Angeles will pass ordinances (like other posts from Orange County, CA, just addressed) to "protect the citizens of their city" but they aren't protecting them. They are taking away the rights of others. I follow the rules set forth by the FAA then I should be allowed to fly wherever I legally (by federal govt standards) can. To have some city tell me that I can't fly in a park, that's wide open, no people around, I'm not endangering someone, etc. is not right, it's not legal either.

BigAl07: I highly respect your knowledge of UAVs and leadership on this board. But on this issue in my city, I disagree. If someone doesn't stand up against the cities in America then more and more restrictions will be put into place and UAV operators will be pushed out to areas not within city or county lands. The city says you can't fly above a park is step one. Next it's saying (like Huntington Beach, CA is proposing) you can't fly above houses (because they have people in them), then you can't fly above a beach, or you have to have a permit to fly and permission of the city govt. etc. It's a slippery slope. One big city does it and the surrounding smaller cities or county will follow suit. Airspace shrinks.

Standing up for my right to fly my UAV will not harm the industry, but it might actually protect it.
 

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We agree to disagree.

I found it was much easier to address this on the front side before an ordinance went into place where I live & fly. I was actually "consulted with" in this regards and they came up with a fair and not over reaching "Land Use Ordinance" in our county and the town where I work is currently trying to mimic that same ordinance.

One thing to understand, and let this soak in.... is that UAS operators are such a small percentage of the overall population. We can jump up and down, wave our arms in the air, scream, pout, cry, threaten all we want but at the end of the day the Media Hype has already beat us to the punch. People are so "Drone Skeered" that it's not even funny and all it takes is one person to say, "I don't feel safe with that contraption flying anywhere near our park" for them to get banned and stay banned.

Like it or not we are a small minority and well behind the curve in terms of public perception and public opinion of our "flying machines of terror, spying, and mass destruction".

Of course it's your city and your hobby so by all means address it any way you want but remember this... in our circles we are big fish in a small pond but the moment we step out into reality we are but a small larvae in the ocean. John Q. Public will determine our fate whether we like it or not. That's a reality and one we'll have to face sooner or later.
 
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OK simpler...safety and liability.

Someone hits a person in the head with a drone...a flyaway, lots can go wrong with people on the ground in the park.
How many people have been injured by drones? How many people have been injured by baseballs... Frisbees... footballs?

Answer on drones is almost none. Answer for each of the other items is hundreds if not thousands. Yet, baseballs, Frisbees and footballs are all allowed in parks.

Can people be injured by a drone? Certainly. However, it's still highly unlikely.

Part of the reason they are banned is because people don't really understand that they are no more dangerous than anything else. But also because of the nuisance of the drone. People perceive them as annoying buzzing flying things.
 
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How many people have been injured by drones? How many people have been injured by baseballs... Frisbees... footballs?

Answer on drones is almost none. Answer for each of the other items is hundreds if not thousands. Yet, baseballs, Frisbees and footballs are all allowed in parks.

Can people be injured by a drone? Certainly. However, it's still highly unlikely.

Part of the reason they are banned is because people don't really understand that they are no more dangerous than anything else. But also because of the nuisance of the drone. People perceive them as annoying buzzing flying things.
Unfortunately there have been enough incidents the hospitals now have a V97 code for billing due to drone incidents.

Then there is this too where falling drones have injured babies, and one where the child's eye was sliced out: Drone Accidents and Personal Injuries as well as mentioning the singer Enrique Iglesias at a concert requiring reconstructive surgery as he attempted to stop it from hitting him. There are probably many more that we don't hear about, hence the city councils concern about drones and the growing number of ordinances against them.

Fly 'em while you still got 'em as I doubt it will become easier.
 
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How many people have been injured by drones? How many people have been injured by baseballs... Frisbees... footballs?

Answer on drones is almost none. Answer for each of the other items is hundreds if not thousands. Yet, baseballs, Frisbees and footballs are all allowed in parks.

Can people be injured by a drone? Certainly. However, it's still highly unlikely.

Part of the reason they are banned is because people don't really understand that they are no more dangerous than anything else. But also because of the nuisance of the drone. People perceive them as annoying buzzing flying things.
The pigeons and seagulls at the park that steal my food from the picnic table are more annoying....

Ban Them!!!!!!!!

LOL
 
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How many people have been injured by drones? How many people have been injured by baseballs... Frisbees... footballs?

Answer on drones is almost none. Answer for each of the other items is hundreds if not thousands. Yet, baseballs, Frisbees and footballs are all allowed in parks.

Can people be injured by a drone? Certainly. However, it's still highly unlikely.

Part of the reason they are banned is because people don't really understand that they are no more dangerous than anything else. But also because of the nuisance of the drone. People perceive them as annoying buzzing flying things.
Exactly.

And what are we doing as a community to change people perspective of our hobby?

Some of the advice here is to do it anyway. Does that help us?

How about we find a way to show people exactly what we do in a way that doesn't annoy or frighten them. People are naturally afraid of things they don't understand.

How about in this case a group of fliers petition the city for a day to show the city and the public that drones and people can share a park. If you can show them it is not a problem then things might change.

I've been down this road a few time with other activities. As a member of a 4X4 club people thought all we did was go out in the woods and tear up the environment. We took action to change that. We volunteered to cut hiking trails in a state park, we volunteered to help in Search and Rescue for lost, children, hikers and hunters. We took food out into the forest during a terrible snowy winter for deer and other wildlife. And we made sure the local newspapers cover the good things that we did. Just a example, but you might get the idea.

"Drone" is a bad word today with many people. When a guy I know noticed a drone fly near his property a few months ago he told me if if comes over his house "I'm shooting that **** thing down". I informed him of the law, he didn't care, he sees it as an invasion of his privacy. This is real and we need to change it.

Doing what we want, just because we can say we are doing what is legal is not the answer, that is a way to get laws changed against us, not for us.

Think real hard before you act, everything done with a drone reflects on us all and our future. Years ago I said it won't be long until there are restrictions because of what I saw people doing with their drone and then posting their videos harassing a neighbor or flying over someone laying out by their pool in their backyard. It hurt us.

I will not put up with anyone disturbing me and I own one. Think.

Edited for some mistakes.
 
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Unfortunately there have been enough incidents the hospitals now have a V97 code for billing due to drone incidents.
That's not totally true. That ICD-9 code contain no verbiage whatsoever about "drones".

It basically covers various aircraft accidents (e.g. being sucked into an engine, injured by rotating propeller (which was created someone walking into an airplane propeller, parachutist injured on landing, person injured while boarding an aircraft, etc.)

The list is here...
http://icd10-cm.billingcodes.net/medicalbilling/icd10-cm-coding/V00-Y99/V95-V97/V97/other-specified-air-transport-accidents
 
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Unfortunately there have been enough incidents the hospitals now have a V97 code for billing due to drone incidents.
I'm a little stunned on this. I'd normally be right to the point and say this is incorrect but....

V97 is the ICD-9 code for an injury resulting from being sucked into a jet engine. Now, that is just funny on it's own. But I don't think you just pulled that out of your hat. I could see someone having to use a code that was close and using that code and you'd need to have known that somehow. So I'm just at a loss as to how that all came about.

Then there is this too where falling drones have injured babies, and one where the child's eye was sliced out: Drone Accidents and Personal Injuries as well as mentioning the singer Enrique Iglesias at a concert requiring reconstructive surgery as he attempted to stop it from hitting him. There are probably many more that we don't hear about, hence the city councils concern about drones and the growing number of ordinances against them.
The Iglesias thing was something that _he_ set up (it was part of his act). So I'd not consider that an accident in this discussion. You named, what... a couple of other accidents. Even if I gave you 20, 50 or 100 more (non-existent) drone injuries you'd still not come close to the number of injuries from things like baseballs and footballs.

I'm not discounting what you say at all nor that the parks are reacting to what they have been told nor that they have a right to do what they want. I just wanted to include some perspective on the matter. I really think things like park bans are not appropriate. I'd say that the "annoyance" from the sound of the drone would be a more valid reason to have some restriction.

For me personally, I'd just not fly in a crowed public park but I know a lot of people don't have many other choices. It's nice living in a state where 90% of it is public land.
 

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