going up near storm fronts, tornadoes, etc.

Joined
Jan 7, 2017
Messages
441
Reaction score
84
drone footage from storm chasers becoming more common;
what rules do they follow if they want to keep their birds safe...?
I guess, like ground chasing, some lean towards getting the
most exciting images-footage regardless of safety...?
has anyone yet reported losing drone to tornado?
 

PhantomWetSuits

Approved Vendor
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,290
Reaction score
804
Age
56
As a storm chaser of sorts , all the rules still apply , most of the footage taken is the Forming of the Storm such as this Tornado that started to form over the lake, but you do have to negotiate the hail and of course tons of Rain that comes down hard. We have videos of us flying in the Hail and the Rain with the Phantom 4 Geared up with the Wet Suit .

Here is the last Tornado we Captured Forming , notice how its hard to see the rain in the video frames
these two frames happened in seconds.

If your going to chase the Storms you need to have a Wet Suit to protect the Phantom and learn how to clear the lens.
Its very difficult to get past heavy winds and your drone just gets blown back and than recovers.

Phantomrain.org
Gear to fly your Phantom 4 in the Rain and Float On Water.

Ohio had 30 Tornados in a single month last year and this year we expect the same storm action.

Ligntning-strike-5cac00912ce5c-1381x763.jpg


Here I was flying out to in pitch black to capture the Lightning Strikers out over the trees when the next crack of lightning showed the Tornado Forming and me back up quickly and capturing these frames. We also have the video , on our website.

Screen-Shot-2019-09-13-at-10-54-35-PM-5dd4e6bb349bb-1381x778.png
 
Last edited:

Meta4

Moderator
Staff Member
Premium Pilot
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
14,739
Reaction score
8,740
drone footage from storm chasers becoming more common;
what rules do they follow if they want to keep their birds safe...?
The same basic rule all drone flyers need to understand.
Plan your flight so that you don't put your drone into a situation where it will have to fight against a too-strong headwind to get home again.
 

PhantomWetSuits

Approved Vendor
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,290
Reaction score
804
Age
56
Oh its not just the Picture for us Storm Chaser it is the adventure /. and there is Risk but its all worth it...

If you watch those sitting right next to the Live Volcano in Iceland even life and death can be worth it. 🤪

Phantomrain.org
Gear to fly your Phantom in the Rain and Land on water.
 
Joined
May 19, 2015
Messages
111
Reaction score
56
A couple of summers ago, I shot some photos of an anvil head storm cloud. I live in a pretty rural and treed area. I launched from my back deck and went up to 350 AGL, essentially right above the house. I took shots for five minutes or so as the storm moved in from the west, just hovering there. Suddenly the drone starting moving to the east at a fast rate of speed. The trees here are close to 100' tall so in less than 10 seconds I lost site of the P4P. I checked the orientation of the AC on the map and from the camera view and tried flying back towards by house. The rate at which is was moving away slowed, but it was still going backwards. I flipped into Sport mode and still could not make headway.

There was not a puff of wind on the ground, but I realized there was very strong wind not far up. I dropped the altitude to just over 100 AGL as quickly as I could and started making great headway back towards my house. I still had video down link so I could make sure I was just above the tree tops without hitting them. The AC came into view and I descended in my yard and landed safely on the deck. As I hit the deck, it started to rain heavily, and there was still barely any wind at ground level, or even at tree top level.

So if one chose to fly in the vicinity of a storm, be prepared for the unexpected, keep your cool, stay aware of the environment, realize that winds can be vastly different at different altitudes, make sure you stay close to your home point with a mostly charged battery and try to have a contingency plan for if and when it goes bad.
 

PhantomWetSuits

Approved Vendor
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,290
Reaction score
804
Age
56
You dont have to be a Storm Chaser to be prepared for Mother Nature to knock on your door .

Being a good Drone Pilot is all about being Prepared for the Unexpected and there is no better way than to be Geared up with A Wet Suit to Protect your Battery with and Air tight seal so you dont Panic or Disconnect the battery.

Phantomrain.org
Be Prepared and Gear up for the Unexpected.

One of our clients sent this in, its one of the most viewed videos .

 
Joined
Oct 29, 2018
Messages
779
Reaction score
620
Location
Miami-Dade
If you do decide to fly in such conditions keep in mind if the wind takes your bird and smashes it against someone’s personal property you might get an audience with the FAA.

IMG_1616939983.918412.jpg
 

PhantomWetSuits

Approved Vendor
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,290
Reaction score
804
Age
56
Yes we have called the FAA many many times and flying in the Rain or Capturing A storm is not included in Careless or Reckless Operations.. There are some regulations in regards to Storms but that is not one of them .




There is no regulation about flying in the rain. It is 100% legal to do so. However, flying in the rain "could" trigger other violations based on the actual conditions:

You do have to keep Line of sight. but the FAA cannot control the weather and they dont want you in the clouds . But there is no regulation that you cannot fly in Heavy Winds , Rain or Thunder or Lightning.

One day they may post that flying in storms is not acceptable but its not today.

Phantomrain.org
Be Prepared and Gear up for the Unexpected.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: skiptv
Joined
Oct 29, 2018
Messages
779
Reaction score
620
Location
Miami-Dade
Yes we have called the FAA many many times and flying in the Rain or Capturing A storm is not included in Careless or Reckless Operations.. There are some regulations in regards to Storms but that is not one of them .

So that post really does not belong , but i will post some others that do..


There is no regulation about flying in the rain. It is 100% legal to do so. However, flying in the rain "could" trigger other violations based on the actual conditions:

You do have to keep Line of sight. but the FAA cannot control the weather and they dont want you in the clouds . But there is no regulation that you cannot fly in Heavy Winds.

Phantomrain.org
Be Prepared and Gear up for the Unexpected.

I was referencing the op on flying around tornadoes (mostly wind related) as my post does not mention rain only wind.
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2016
Messages
1,172
Reaction score
693
Yes we have called the FAA many many times and flying in the Rain or Capturing A storm is not included in Careless or Reckless Operations.. There are some regulations in regards to Storms but that is not one of them .




There is no regulation about flying in the rain. It is 100% legal to do so. However, flying in the rain "could" trigger other violations based on the actual conditions:

You do have to keep Line of sight. but the FAA cannot control the weather and they dont want you in the clouds . But there is no regulation that you cannot fly in Heavy Winds , Rain or Thunder or Lightning.

One day they may post that flying in storms is not acceptable but its not today.

Phantomrain.org
Be Prepared and Gear up for the Unexpected.
Yes, not against the law but the consequence of such flying can be very likely. Flying in stormy weather can quickly become uncontrollable.
 
  • Like
Reactions: PhantomWetSuits
Joined
Aug 7, 2016
Messages
1,172
Reaction score
693
Oh its not just the Picture for us Storm Chaser it is the adventure /. and there is Risk but its all worth it...

If you watch those sitting right next to the Live Volcano in Iceland even life and death can be worth it. 🤪

Phantomrain.org
Gear to fly your Phantom in the Rain and Land on water.
I was not talking about the volcano. If you don't go very close there is no big risk.
 
  • Like
Reactions: MTO
Joined
Oct 29, 2018
Messages
779
Reaction score
620
Location
Miami-Dade
But there is no regulation that you cannot fly in Heavy Winds

Phantomrain.org
Be Prepared and Gear up for the Unexpected.


The FAA does not impose aircraft limits on any particular type of aircraft, that is left to the aircraft manufacture in the operating limits.
The Phantom 4 has a max wind speed of 22 mph,exceeding these limits could be considered operating in a careless and reckless manner.
 
  • Haha
Reactions: PhantomWetSuits
Joined
Feb 23, 2018
Messages
59
Reaction score
31
Age
63
I was referencing the op on flying around tornadoes (mostly wind related) as my post does not mention rain only wind.

While I'm sure that any tornado can make short work of smashing any drone, I think the liablity would be rather limited and the FAA would not be interested unless any recklessness could be proven. Unless compelling eyewitness testimony was available, no one could even prove that the smashed drone was even airborne except by cyclonic winds.

They pick up almost anything and can carry it for miles.
1617002507644.png


Given what a tornado can do with airplanes on the ground, I kinda doubt that a drone launched at over 100mph into someone's house would even get the FAA's attention.

Also, I think it would be complete folly to fly a drone very close at all to a tornado unless your budget has planned for some drone replacements. They are routinely accompanied by high winds that easily exceed drone return velocity. Said winds are not reliably traveling in the same direction as the storm front, so planning on operating from a downwind location might be a mistake, too.

Yes. I live in tornado alley. I don't live in a mobile home, however, so my family doesn't have to worry as much. :)

(Tornados are infamous for seeking out and destroying mobile home parks.)
 
Last edited:

PhantomWetSuits

Approved Vendor
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,290
Reaction score
804
Age
56
While I'm sure that any tornado can make short work of smashing any drone, I think the liablity would be rather limited and the FAA would not be interested unless any recklessness could be proven. Unless compelling eyewitness testimony was available, no one could even prove that the smashed drone was even airborne except by cyclonic winds.

They pick up almost anything and can carry it for miles.
View attachment 121744

Given what a tornado can do with airplanes on the ground, I kinda doubt that a drone launched at over 100mph into someone's house would even get the FAA's attention.

Also, I think it would be complete folly to fly a drone very close at all to a tornado unless your budget has planned for some drone replacements. They are routinely accompanied by high winds that easily exceed drone return velocity. Said winds are not reliably traveling in the same direction as the storm front, so planning on operating from a downwind location might be a mistake, too.

Yes. I live in tornado alley. I don't live in a mobile home, however, so my family doesn't have to worry as much. :)

(Tornados are infamous for seeking out and destroying mobile home parks.)
I think your post really puts that into perspective. Im hoping with the New DJI FPV that even if my drone does get tossed upside down it might be able to recover , it will be interesting to see what comes this year.

Phantomrain.org
Gear to fly your Phantom in and out of the storm.
 

New Threads

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
140,491
Messages
1,448,194
Members
102,286
Latest member
brotherb3