Close Call at Hollywood Beach...

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#5
The diplomat hotel is 36 stories tall, he appears to be above the penthouses of it, I would venture to say he was higher than 400ft.
Funny, I looked up the same thing.

I was thinking it was right about the height of the top of the structure, actually.

Hard to judge with those wide POVs...
 
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#6
Funny, I looked up the same thing.

I was thinking it was right about the height of the top of the structure, actually.

Hard to judge with those wide POVs...
Well- if a structure appears lower than the horizon you are higher than it- no judgement required. Do you know where that area is and the height of the actual buildings? I had a quick look and it’s a very long stretch of coastline.... The POV of the lens isn’t an issue.
 
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#7
Well- if a structure appears lower than the horizon you are higher than it- no judgement required. Do you know where that area is and the height of the actual buildings? I had a quick look and it’s a very long stretch of coastline.... The POV of the lens isn’t an issue.
Look at the video for yourself. As noted above, the hotel is reported as 36 stories high, and you'll see the distant horizon is about in line with the very peaks of the building's structure. Generally height in feet is around 10 feet per story. And of course there's going to be a slight rounding error (LOL, get it?) in that "structure vs horizon" math due to earth curvature.

I really don't see much point in nitpicking the altitude down to inches. If the joker with the drone happened to be at 410' there and missed the chopper, he would have collided with the chopper at a "legal" 399 feet.

And I put the word legal in quotes because of the wording of hobby flight regulations here in the U.S., other restrictions which may or may not be in place notwithstanding.
 
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#8
I read that helicopters must stay 500+ up,....unless they are over "open water" or "sparsely populated" ground. This means that both, a drone helicopter can legally share the same air space below 400ft if its over "open water". This is a problem that the FAA will need to review. Maybe the answer is to remove the "unless over open water" loophole for helicopters? Make them stay 500+ feet unless they under specific circumstances?
 
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#10
It’s simple, restrict manned helicopters and aircraft to above 500 ft, unmanned below 400 feet unless within 5 miles of the airport. SUAS are considered aircraft and should have reasonable access to the NAS.
 
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#11
I read that helicopters must stay 500+ up,....unless they are over "open water" or "sparsely populated" ground. This means that both, a drone helicopter can legally share the same air space below 400ft if its over "open water". This is a problem that the FAA will need to review. Maybe the answer is to remove the "unless over open water" loophole for helicopters? Make them stay 500+ feet unless they under specific circumstances?
Actually the law (14 CFR 101.41 (d)) is quite clear - it's up to the UAV pilot to avoid manned aircraft at all times. As for aircraft altitude minimums, the 500 ft rule does not usually apply to helicopters:

14 CFR 91.119

(d) Helicopters, powered parachutes, and weight-shift-control aircraft. If the operation is conducted without hazard to persons or property on the surface—

(1) A helicopter may be operated at less than the minimums prescribed in paragraph (b) or (c) of this section, provided each person operating the helicopter complies with any routes or altitudes specifically prescribed for helicopters by the FAA;​
 
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#12
Enjoy your freedoms to fly while you can. It's folks like this, who knowing fly out of bounds, then post it on youtube (similar situation to the posted flight in Las Vegas earlier this year) that will eventually ruin it for the rest of us. Flying in a totally congested area like that and I am sure the pilot had no liability insurance. Similar issue occurred 1 year or so ago, where a Blackhawk was hit by a Phantom in NYC. The pilot was 2.5 miles away from the aircraft.

I hear it all the time, "a drone can't bring down a plane" well for sure a drone could being down a helicopter. Odds are still that nothing would have happened if contact had been made unless a direct strike to the front wind shield which might have cause the pilot to make a flight move that could have been hard to recover from considering where he was flying. Or a hit to the tail rotor, which could have been enough to take the Helicopter down.

It still amazes me that people will post this type of stuff, just for youtube hits. The local news team ate this up, made it front head lines I am sure. And it's type of head lines that will eventually force irrevocable action by the US, either the FAA or other governing body.

Paul C
 
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#13
I live in the area and fly along the beach all the time. Since it’s a big tourist hotspot, there are tons of sightseeing helicopters and small planes that cruise the coastline every few min, 7 days a week (much more on weekends.) I’ve been on the 15-20th floor of many condo buildings and always observe heli’s flying at my eye level or lower. They aren’t worried about drones. They’ll prob make an example out of this guy with a hefty fine.
 
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#14
I live in the area and fly along the beach all the time. Since it’s a big tourist hotspot, there are tons of sightseeing helicopters and small planes that cruise the coastline every few min, 7 days a week (much more on weekends.) I’ve been on the 15-20th floor of many condo buildings and always observe heli’s flying at my eye level or lower. They aren’t worried about drones. They’ll prob make an example out of this guy with a hefty fine.
That would make those heli’s your watching around 200ft above sea level- sounds about right. You say they aren’t worried about drones. Have you considered they probably don’t even see them? Knowingly flying in a high traffic are like that might be bordering on stupidity,
 
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#15
It is our responsibility to avoid them (and I promise they will try to avoid us). If you can't do that, then don't fly there. That is why 'private pilots' don't fly into Chicago O'Hare.
If the airspace is busy with manned aircraft we must maintain a safe distance.
 
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BigAl07

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#16
I live in the area and fly along the beach all the time. Since it’s a big tourist hotspot, there are tons of sightseeing helicopters and small planes that cruise the coastline every few min, 7 days a week (much more on weekends.) I’ve been on the 15-20th floor of many condo buildings and always observe heli’s flying at my eye level or lower. They aren’t worried about drones. They’ll prob make an example out of this guy with a hefty fine.
Aren't worried about drones? You might want to reach out to a couple of them and ask them exactly how they think because changes are they are indeed worried about drones. Their windshields are not impact rated and their tail rotors are a single failure point. Their business and their very lives depend on being able to operate safely in a busy and hectic environment and the last thing they expect/want is an sUAS operating directly in front of them.

What some people don't understand is that a good sized bug/beetle can be felt when it strikes the windshield of a helo at speed so what do you think will happen when the mass of our sUAS strikes one?
 

BigAl07

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#17
It is our responsibility to avoid them (and I promise they will try to avoid us). If you can't do that, then don't fly there.
Exactly!! It's up to US as responsible and moral sUAS operators to know when to say "No Go".

That is why 'private pilots' don't fly into Chicago O'Hare.
That's an understatement. Whew talk about being the tiny fish in a BIG busy BUSY pond. Being the low man on the totem pole is NO FUN in that environment. Atlanta/Hartsfield is the same way... No thank you LOL.
 
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#18
That would make those heli’s your watching around 200ft above sea level- sounds about right. You say they aren’t worried about drones. Have you considered they probably don’t even see them? Knowingly flying in a high traffic are like that might be bordering on stupidity,
Simmer down bud.
I have been on several helicopter runs shooting with my DSLR over the years and have spoken to many pilots. They’ve all said that they expect the drone to get out of the way because usually they are going too fast and won’t see it in time. Fact is, it is 100% legal to fly there so long as you aren’t near the airport or above 400ft. If they made the entire coastline a no-fly zone, different story.
 
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#19
Simmer down bud.
I have been on several helicopter runs shooting with my DSLR over the years and have spoken to many pilots. They’ve all said that they expect the drone to get out of the way because usually they are going too fast and won’t see it in time. Fact is, it is 100% legal to fly there so long as you aren’t near the airport or above 400ft. If they made the entire coastline a no-fly zone, different story.
Simmer down? LOL.... Wake up!!!

Im not having a go at you specifically- I am simply saying the whole "my drone is an aircraft according to the FAA and I'm entitled to fly there as long as Im below 400ft attitude and how dare the manned AC fly below 500ft" attitude a lot seemingly have is ignorant and irresponsible.

Tha attitude the helicopter pilots probably have is the drones shouldn't be anywhere near where they are flying.
 
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BigAl07

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#20
Simmer down bud.
I have been on several helicopter runs shooting with my DSLR over the years and have spoken to many pilots. They’ve all said that they expect the drone to get out of the way because usually they are going too fast and won’t see it in time. Fact is, it is 100% legal to fly there so long as you aren’t near the airport or above 400ft. If they made the entire coastline a no-fly zone, different story.
It's only "legal" if the sUAS meets several specific requirements including:

"The aircraft is operated in a manner that does not interfere with, and gives way to, any manned aircraft;"

If a manned aircraft is hit or has to avoid an sUAS then the above has not been met and is in violation of FARs. If a sUAS is flying (not in formation or in a controlled manner coordinated with the manned aircraft) within 500' of a manned aircraft it's no longer legal.
 

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