It was just a question of time....

Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), commonly known as a drone and also referred to as an unpiloted aerial vehicle and a remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), is an aircraft without a human pilot aboard.

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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by jjt1101 » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:13 pm

Come on guys be Fair and reasonable. The law or who was first there or who's got right of way Doesnt matter at all. Its the attitude which does matters and if in absence and with both feet secured on mother earth the PIC of the drone can only lose an expensive radio controlled toy......come on...your attitude stinks! Be interested to see your comments with a near miss in reversed roles...
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by tanglefoot » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:20 pm

There are so many things to consider here. There is no legal difference between commercial and 'casual' use of rc toys. Below 150ft, within line of sight and not from/over a public road and not by night just about defines it. No mention of built up areas, crowds or anything else.

Now, the drone thing. If anyone sees a multi rotor model they shout "drone". To me a drone must be capable of autonomous flight and that is a characteristic that can be built into a fixed wing, helicopter or multi rotor model of just about any size. Anything else is NOT A DRONE.

My feeling is that "drones" are legal when flying under airlaw, as per above, as are rc controlled model aircraft.

There is an obligation on model aircraft pilots to actively avoid encounters with full size aircraft, if only to ensure that we can continue to practise our hobby. samaa (SA model aircraft association, report to aeroclub) have distanced themselves from commercial use of models (even under existing airlaw) thereby leaving a void where commercial operators are unregulated.

I believe that awareness of each other, full size and models, has increased exponentially over the past 5 or so years and that the risk to full size has been reduced as a result. samaa and aero club can do much more by making rc club information more accessible to full size pilots, especially those visiting pilots not familiar with an area.

I dont believe that a close encounter with full size aircraft is a "storm in a tea cup". The circumstances need to be determined but if the attitude portrayed (seriously or not) by hexapilot is true in this instance then the model pilot needs to be censured, if only for bringing the hobby into disrepute.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by heisan » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:25 pm

tanglefoot wrote:There are so many things to consider here. There is no legal difference between commercial and 'casual' use of rc toys. Below 150ft, within line of sight and not from/over a public road and not by night just about defines it. No mention of built up areas, crowds or anything else.

Now, the drone thing. If anyone sees a multi rotor model they shout "drone". To me a drone must be capable of autonomous flight and that is a characteristic that can be built into a fixed wing, helicopter or multi rotor model of just about any size. Anything else is NOT A DRONE.

I am sorry TF, but you are 100% wrong on just about everything you said here (the only correct thing was the built up areas and crowds). The CARS are on the CAA web site - you can read them there.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by tanglefoot » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:35 pm

heisan wrote:
tanglefoot wrote:There are so many things to consider here. There is no legal difference between commercial and 'casual' use of rc toys. Below 150ft, within line of sight and not from/over a public road and not by night just about defines it. No mention of built up areas, crowds or anything else.

Now, the drone thing. If anyone sees a multi rotor model they shout "drone". To me a drone must be capable of autonomous flight and that is a characteristic that can be built into a fixed wing, helicopter or multi rotor model of just about any size. Anything else is NOT A DRONE.

I am sorry TF, but you are 100% wrong on just about everything you said here (the only correct thing was the built up areas and crowds). The CARS are on the CAA web site - you can read them there.
I'll stick with what I have said until you prove otherwise. You quoted CARS. Show us the quote.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by heisan » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:37 pm

jjt1101 wrote:Come on guys be Fair and reasonable. The law or who was first there or who's got right of way Doesnt matter at all. Its the attitude which does matters and if in absence and with both feet secured on mother earth the PIC of the drone can only lose an expensive radio controlled toy......come on...your attitude stinks! Be interested to see your comments with a near miss in reversed roles...
I am being 'fair and reasonable'. There is a thin sliver of air 50m high over the earth surface which is barely regulated. People can build scafolds/masts. Balloons can be floated. Kites can be flown. Children can play with toy planes, chuckies, and yes, even quadcopters.

It is a tiny sliver of airspace, which the general public is allowed to use pretty much at will - and yes, even people without the ability to comprehend that they may be placing a low-flier at risk.

Sure there are some adults who will be flying more expensive toys in that air space, and 99 times out of 100 (there is always 1 *hole around), they will take every action possible to avoid full size aircraft. But some obstacles (like children's kites, tethered kites, balloons, etc) just cannot get out of their way.

When you are flying at extremely low level, the person who takes final responsibility for the safety of the flight is the pilot. He must take utmost caution to avoid all airborne hazards. No one else should be required to do it for them.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by heisan » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:43 pm

tanglefoot wrote:
heisan wrote:
tanglefoot wrote:There are so many things to consider here. There is no legal difference between commercial and 'casual' use of rc toys. Below 150ft, within line of sight and not from/over a public road and not by night just about defines it. No mention of built up areas, crowds or anything else.

Now, the drone thing. If anyone sees a multi rotor model they shout "drone". To me a drone must be capable of autonomous flight and that is a characteristic that can be built into a fixed wing, helicopter or multi rotor model of just about any size. Anything else is NOT A DRONE.

I am sorry TF, but you are 100% wrong on just about everything you said here (the only correct thing was the built up areas and crowds). The CARS are on the CAA web site - you can read them there.
I'll stick with what I have said until you prove otherwise. You quoted CARS. Show us the quote.
I have quoted the regs a dozen times on the various drone/UAV threads. The CAA web site is slow now, and I am not going to do it again. The definition of a model aircraft (including the limitation that it can only be used for recreation, sport or competition) is in Part 1. There are no restrictions on line of site. Autonomous flight is explicitly allowed for model aircraft. The day/night limitation fell away in CAR 2011. Flight restrictions (or lack thereof) are in Part 91. There is no such thing as a 'drone' in SA law. It is a model aircraft, or a UAV.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by doodapunisha » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:46 pm

It's like this. You wake up on Sunday and decide to wash and polish your car. Out of all the millions and millions of open square kilometers across South Africa, a bird comes and has a dump on your car... that's just how it works, fate or karma or whatever.

The same fate or karma has a heli and a multirotor (because its not a drone) flying in the same airspace, at the same time, at the same altitude, at nearly the same place.

Assuming the heli had the permission to be that low, then both have equal right to be there. Lucky no one was hurt or property damaged. That's just how it goes and how its going to be forever.

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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by cage » Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:51 pm

tanglefoot wrote: I'll stick with what I have said until you prove otherwise. You quoted CARS. Show us the quote.
Go read the info on caa.co.za with regard UAS. There is a VERY legal definition with regard commercial use that puts the object under CAA authority and makes it not approved and very much illegal.
What is vague is the use of the word "recreational" which puts the object under under the authority of RAASA and they have no guidance whatsoever.. :twisted:
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by tanglefoot » Sun Oct 12, 2014 10:01 pm

This is a quote of airlaw:
“Operation of model aircraft
94.06.11 Model aircraft are exempted from these regulations –
(a) except from regulation 94.05.1; and
(b) provided that no model aircraft shall be flown –
(i) higher than 150 feet above the surface; or
(ii) from or above a public road,

unless with the prior approval of the Director and on conditions determined by him or her; or
in airspace specifically approved for the purpose by the Director and on conditions set by him
or her for the use of such airspace.”
If you wish to quote "another thread" feel free to do so. If you wish to quote another part of airlaw then please be more specific.

PS: CAA's website is not that slow.
PPS: I am happy to learn. To be told I am wrong does not teach me anything.

PPPPS: Please don't quote draft legislation. It is a waste of our time.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by Hexapilot » Sun Oct 12, 2014 10:57 pm

heisan wrote:
happyskipper wrote:The VFR see and avoid applies to other aircraft, structures and the ground - a person operating a R/C Model or UAV must have the brains to understand that he has the power to kill people through his actions..... If not, then the person should not be allowed out in public, never mind exercise his "right" to operate his UAV or whatever. The roads are controlled, and any person who takes a radio-controlled car onto a freeway can expect to be challenged by the law, as well as several angry road users. The same consideration applies to the air.......
The difference is, when you fly below 150', you are driving on the sidewalk, not the freeway, and need to keep an eye out for pedestrians and bicycles.

Lets take a slightly different example. Lets say a 6 year old kid is flying his kite (handled very similarly in the CARs to a model aircraft) in the park. A low flying chopper manages to snag the line, foul the tail rotor and crash. Is the child responsible? Should flying kites be banned completely, or perhaps only with adult supervision (because the 6 year old can't himself comprehend that flying a kite may endanger a passing chopper)?
Seriously,
How flippin flimsy are these helicopters that a kid's kite can take it out?
Does this mean that Al Qaida can just send up a couple of kites to stop the Black Hawks and Apache's from flying low over them?
I am a lot more worried now, when a real heli is flying over head, than my neighbour's 14 year old flying his quad copter over my garden...

50 meters is high for a rc/drone/uav and low for a fullsize ac. The DJI systems are often limited to 100 meters and they will not start within the CTR of a known airfield. Unless you hack them, but tjen you know about it, and know why you fo it and should be placed in front of the Avcom lynching squad for a proper lashing.

Really, you guys are making a huge fuss over nothing.
I will ask again.
How many drones have taken out ANY full size sircraft? Hobby ones not military.
From what I can google, none. Not even one flimsy heli.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by pilotC » Mon Oct 13, 2014 6:32 am

Since a lot of pilots are complaining about these 'drones'. The only sensible solution is to ban flight of all aircraft below 150ft unless for the purpose of take off or landing. All 'drones' should then only be allowed to fly below 150ft and not near airports.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by farmpilot » Mon Oct 13, 2014 6:55 am

Hexapilot wrote:
heisan wrote:
happyskipper wrote:The VFR see and avoid applies to other aircraft, structures and the ground - a person operating a R/C Model or UAV must have the brains to understand that he has the power to kill people through his actions..... If not, then the person should not be allowed out in public, never mind exercise his "right" to operate his UAV or whatever. The roads are controlled, and any person who takes a radio-controlled car onto a freeway can expect to be challenged by the law, as well as several angry road users. The same consideration applies to the air.......
The difference is, when you fly below 150', you are driving on the sidewalk, not the freeway, and need to keep an eye out for pedestrians and bicycles.

Lets take a slightly different example. Lets say a 6 year old kid is flying his kite (handled very similarly in the CARs to a model aircraft) in the park. A low flying chopper manages to snag the line, foul the tail rotor and crash. Is the child responsible? Should flying kites be banned completely, or perhaps only with adult supervision (because the 6 year old can't himself comprehend that flying a kite may endanger a passing chopper)?
Seriously,
How flippin flimsy are these helicopters that a kid's kite can take it out?
Does this mean that Al Qaida can just send up a couple of kites to stop the Black Hawks and Apache's from flying low over them?
I am a lot more worried now, when a real heli is flying over head, than my neighbour's 14 year old flying his quad copter over my garden...

50 meters is high for a rc/drone/uav and low for a fullsize ac. The DJI systems are often limited to 100 meters and they will not start within the CTR of a known airfield. Unless you hack them, but tjen you know about it, and know why you fo it and should be placed in front of the Avcom lynching squad for a proper lashing.

Really, you guys are making a huge fuss over nothing.
I will ask again.
How many drones have taken out ANY full size sircraft? Hobby ones not military.
From what I can google, none. Not even one flimsy heli.
Yep they are that flimsy - it doesn't matter how many have brought down aircraft, yet. One will be too many. Kites have brought down many helicopters.

Idiots in Joburg have caused so much <<moderated - language>> with the drones it was bound to happen - Mandela's hospital, the opening credits of Carte Blanche (above the JSN tower), above the runners at the Joburg marathon and the Red Bull X wing fighters at the Union Buildings. They all know the rules but yet fly commercially in the face of the CAA. It seems the drone guys cannot be trusted.
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by ehs » Mon Oct 13, 2014 8:15 am

heisan wrote: Lets take a slightly different example. Lets say a 6 year old kid is flying his kite (handled very similarly in the CARs to a model aircraft) in the park. A low flying chopper manages to snag the line, foul the tail rotor and crash. Is the child responsible?
As far as the law is concerned of course he's not responsible BECAUSE he is 6 years old :roll: . However, his parent/guardian/supposed-to-be-responsible-adult-in-charge would be and that's who I would go after if briefed in the matter ... :twisted:

@ the poster who asked how the toy operator could be expected to know a helo would be there - my question would be "How could you not know once it had turned up? Sheeesh, them things is noisy! #-o When the helo turns up it is my view that a court would expect a reasonable person to keep the toy where it couldn't cause a problem. A court would not expect a reasonable helicopter pilot to abandon his commercial operation because some irresponsible person might be flying a toy aerie. In a photoshoot helo hovering/slow-flying out-of-ground effect, worrying about powerlines, vortex ring state, photographers urging you to go lower and closer to get the action, which way is the wind blowing, watch them ripples for a clue etc etc. Not always easy to see small objects, it really isn't! 8-[

This stuff I'm talking about has nothing to do with CARS it has to do with the Common Law and what a court would expect from a reasonable person under the particular circumstances. When there is no direct legislation absolutely on point you have to look to the Common Law to see how these things would be adjudicated by a court.

And there would be both civil (ie, damages claim) and criminal (eg culpable homicide if someone died) consequences ...
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by cage » Mon Oct 13, 2014 9:07 am

Thanks @ehs

With regard the CAA there have been no laws or draft legislation published - they have only clarified what is covered by current law and what isn't.
This is mainly around what is a UAS, as they refer to it, which is not approved for flight and so illegal and RC "toys" which is approved and legal.
The definition mainly revolves about how the device is used. In some circumstances, such as commercial use, an approved RC toy would become illegal as in that instance it is considered an UAS.

No one uses the term drone, it is too broad - the industry refers to any unmanned aircraft system (UAS).
The CAA FAQ can be found here: http://www.caa.co.za/Airworthiness Docs/FAQ for UAS.pdf

RC toys are restricted to competitive and sport flying and the way too broad "recreational" purposes. Anything else is considered a UAS and is currently illegal anywhere, anytime, any height..
Outside of this common sense should apply - this seems to be in short supply these days.

I've been following what other countries are doing. Aside from controlling what is in the sky there are more "common" law changes being introduced for public safety and privacy. Hopefully being late in legislating UAS activity will allow the authorities to learn from the mistakes and omissions of others. Or maybe not :x
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Re: It was just a question of time....

Unread post by Kid » Mon Oct 13, 2014 9:20 am

What does the law say about minimum height restrictions for man carrying aircraft in uncontrolled areas? I am sure I read somewhere something like 500” or 700” and 2000” over built-up areas.

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