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Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

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Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

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Old 12-22-2004, 01:16 PM
  #1  
abel_pranger
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Default Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

The following ix excerpted from the minutes of the Oct '04 EC meeting:

"The ED and legal counsel developed wording to be used for signage that can be posted at flying fields; WARNING: Aeromodeling may cause serious injury - proceed at your own risk. Discussion included that AMA can make all the rules they want, however, there is no way to enforce them; some clubs are not allowed to post signs at their flying site; AMA should post this information on the Web site in order to glean feedback from the members; try to create a situation where the club has to proactively decide either to put up the sign or send to letter to AMA that states they cannot put up the sign; AMA could require posting this sign as part of the insurance or have a reduction in limits if the sign is not posted, however this would have to be coordinated with the insurance people; requiring this sign creates a more defensible scenario when it comes to liability coverage. "

Note the stated purpose of posting this to obtain member feedback. Let your DVP know how you feel about if it matters to you.
FWIW, I see it as putting the interests of AMA the insurance company ahead of AMA the promoter/protector of model aviation, again. It reminds me of the negative advertising of Phillip Morris in their anti-smoking commercials. It certainly doesn't project a public image of aeromodeling as the safe and wholesome activity it is.
A club I belong has a history of complaints from one neighbor that began before she closed escrow on her property adjacent to our field. She prosecuted several plans of attack, including noise complaints to the county (which owns our flying site), reporting our activity as fire hazard (volatile fuel, etc.) to the fire department, partying at the field (our annual invite-the-wives picnic, which we had invited complainant to as a conciliatory gesture), and general propagandizing to community groups and the local newspaper about incompatibility of our activity with the neighborhood. I'm certain if such signage were posted, it would have been used to good effect in her attack on us.
I don't speak for the club, but I expect there will be some serious consideration of the "what if we don't" alternative, that is, opt for a reduction in coverage limits as the lesser of evils.

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Old 12-22-2004, 01:49 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

They GOTTA BE FRECKING KIDDING! How about they require that I put this disclaimer on my plane, radio, and AMA card as well.

Out of three organizations (NAR, ABPA, AMA) that I belong or belonged to that could be "potentially" dangerous , the AMA has got to be the most liberal, panzie *****ed, ran organization of them all. This "sign" would just be another instrument that they (AMA insurance Inc.) can use to not have to pay on a claim.

"Reduction of coverage" please, with that type of warning, we may just say screw the membership and bank on flying unprotected, since this phrase comes across that AMA will find a loophole to not only take your premium money, but not protect you as well.

Gee, another letter to the DVP about another "potentially stupid" rule from the EC that might be directed towards charter clubs.

End of rant!
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:18 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: scottrc

They GOTTA BE FRECKING KIDDING! How about they require that I put this disclaimer on my plane, radio, and AMA card as well.

Out of three organizations (NAR, ABPA, AMA) that I belong or belonged to that could be "potentially" dangerous , the AMA has got to be the most liberal, panzie *****ed, ran organization of them all. This "sign" would just be another instrument that they (AMA insurance Inc.) can use to not have to pay on a claim.

"Reduction of coverage" please, with that type of warning, we may just say screw the membership and bank on flying unprotected, since this phrase comes across that AMA will find a loophole to not only take your premium money, but not protect you as well.

Gee, another letter to the DVP about another "potentially stupid" rule from the EC that might be directed towards charter clubs.

End of rant!

Nailed it scott.

I'm no lawyer, but I don't think that having a sign posted reduces liability.
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Old 12-22-2004, 03:34 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

I can see it now.

Lawyer for the injured party _ "my client was injured at the field and YOU even knew it was dangerous to be there, look at your sign right by the entrance to your field, yet you did nothing to prevent his injuries".
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Old 12-22-2004, 04:25 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

And that lawyer might just represent your primary insurance company !!! "So you knowingly and willfully endagered your family" "claim denied". Hey AMA, be careful what you wish for !!!
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Old 12-22-2004, 04:33 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Maybe we could get the State of California to find that it can cause cancer and birth defects, too.
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Old 12-22-2004, 04:39 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Take note that the insurance company is unaware of this plan, according to the quote. The AMA must go to the insurance company to co-ordinate it.

So much for the theory that the insurance company is to blame for all of these actions.
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Old 12-22-2004, 05:09 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: J_R

Take note that the insurance company is unaware of this plan, according to the quote. The AMA must go to the insurance company to co-ordinate it.

So much for the theory that the insurance company is to blame for all of these actions.

I am glad that I am not the only one that noticed that, now Dr. H. Sanford Frank cannot claim that I need professional help over the internet.

FINALLY we have a target, and it ain't the insurance company! Can you say LEADERSHIP? My contention has become that the AMA no longer has an effective modeling oriented approach to our hobby and this puts a definite point on my argument.
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Old 12-22-2004, 05:29 PM
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Matt Kirsch
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

You know it's a da*ned if you do, da*ned if you don't situation here... If you DON'T post signs to that effect, the lawyer is going to say, "You knew that this activity could cause serious injury, YET YOU DID NOTHING TO WARN SPECTATORS OF THE DANGER?!?!?!"

It really doesn't matter what you do, the lawyers are going to find a way to rake you over the coals. "Personal responsibility" doesn't float in the courts, either.
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Old 12-22-2004, 06:35 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Scare tactics , be ware of dog . Give a person a reason to find a problem and they will . Gets more members that way and the insurance Co. does not have to really get involved only if there is a problem that your primary ins. can't handle they call it excess, Read your AMA insert that came with your Card!!

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Old 12-22-2004, 07:02 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: J_R

Take note that the insurance company is unaware of this plan, according to the quote. The AMA must go to the insurance company to co-ordinate it.

So much for the theory that the insurance company is to blame for all of these actions.
Hi JR-
Depends on which part of 'the insurance company.' As I understand it, most of the claims $$ are paid out of the SIR, and AMA is of course the insurance underwriter for that portion, as well as the agent for all of it. The insurance company referred to in the quoted text is clearly the one that only pays claims in excess of the self-insured limit. I think you know very well that the paranoia behind many AMA rules that are founded in concerns over insurance risk, sans any apparent regard for the potential adverse consequences on model aviation, comes from certain individuals within AMA management. There's no surprise this didn't come from the commercial insurance carrier. I'm also quite sure you also know that it isn't the ED, though this appeared in her report to the EC. She does what she is told to do. How many trys are needed to guess who told her what to do?
Actually, I possibly could warm up to this concept, but I'd have to see the reaction to it in a beta test involving just a couple of venues. My preference for test beds are the IMS, entrances to every building at AMA HQ and the flight areas for the various modeling disciplines at the National Flying Site, and in adverts and on the packaging of Dave Brown Products. Give that a couple of years and we'll see...........

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Old 12-22-2004, 07:35 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Abel,
Your approach is the only one I have seen that has merit.
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:12 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Ah, never mind.
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:29 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

[quote]ORIGINAL: abel_pranger

The following ix excerpted from the minutes of the Oct '04 EC meeting:

[ AMA could require posting this sign as part of the insurance or have a reduction in limits if the sign is not posted, however this would have to be coordinated with the insurance people; requiring this sign creates a more defensible scenario when it comes to liability coverage. ]

__________________________________________________ ____________________________


Here is the crux of everything the AMA does with regards to "recommendations, suggestions and guides. Along with the recent rumblings about club safety officers, etc and rules from afar, it would appear that the AMA is trying to shed the insurance liability (and the defense of same) to either the clubs or their members if anything should go wrong. Please tell me I'm wrong, for if I'm not, this could lead to clubs disbanding for fear of possible personal liability claims

P
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Old 12-22-2004, 08:36 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

x
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Old 12-23-2004, 12:26 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Along with the recent rumblings about club safety officers, etc and rules from afar, it would appear that the AMA is trying to shed the insurance liability (and the defense of same) to either the clubs or their members if anything should go wrong. Please tell me I'm wrong, for if I'm not, this could lead to clubs disbanding for fear of possible personal liability claims
Wish I could honestly say that you are wrong, however I can't do so. I am glad to hear that some are beginning to read between the lines including Abel P.
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Old 12-23-2004, 02:12 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: abel_pranger

"The ED and legal counsel developed wording to be used for signage that can be posted at flying fields; WARNING: Aeromodeling may cause serious injury - proceed at your own risk.
Well, Horrace, this kinda puts a hole the size of a locomotive in your contention that aeromodeling is a nice family oriented activity, huh?

*tongue planted firmly in cheek*
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Old 12-23-2004, 02:25 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Now that I have that out of my system, a real question for the members of the forum:

What makes something more indefensible in court: a legal argument by attorneys in court, or a statement like this in the minutes of the orgnazation, or printed articles by the president of the AMA, in his column, calling into question the safety of things like turbines, tail touching, Li batteries, autonomous flight, composite props, and electric starters? Which of these does more damage to the potential legal defense of a position?

Perhaps a better use of the legal counsel's billing hours might be for the EC to ask him that question.
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Old 12-23-2004, 03:15 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: scottrc

They GOTTA BE FRECKING KIDDING! How about they require that I put this disclaimer on my plane, radio, and AMA card as well.

Out of three organizations (NAR, ABPA, AMA) that I belong or belonged to that could be "potentially" dangerous , the AMA has got to be the most liberal, panzie *****ed, ran organization of them all. This "sign" would just be another instrument that they (AMA insurance Inc.) can use to not have to pay on a claim.

"Reduction of coverage" please, with that type of warning, we may just say screw the membership and bank on flying unprotected, since this phrase comes across that AMA will find a loophole to not only take your premium money, but not protect you as well.

Gee, another letter to the DVP about another "potentially stupid" rule from the EC that might be directed towards charter clubs.

End of rant!
Yep, he is a liberal.If you read the last paragraph in the presidents perspective in the jan MA, you'll see. I hate liberals. More government=more problems
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Old 12-23-2004, 07:11 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

I think it's Dave Brown and others laying the groundwork so the AMA cannot be drug into a lawsuit. This way, Ol' Dave can say, "Look at what the EC has been discussing, look at all my columns in MA, I was warning people about the evils of LiPo batteries, I was warning them about flying too high, I kept telling everybody this hobby was unsafe, but nobody would listen."
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Old 12-23-2004, 07:13 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

I flew at "outlaw" or non-AMA feilds for 12 years. My insurance was Allstate and Blue Cross, (and I knew it).

Fellows, you have a choice. Flying without the AMA is not the end of the world. It isn't even a bump in the road. You say the hobby is over regulated, over governed, too restricted. Put your money where your mouth is. Not one of you whiners would dream of going outlaw !! You guys crack me up. There is no Vatican in Muncie. You guys are worked up over a tiny and nearly powerless model organization that needs you more than you need them.

And THAT is what the signs are really for ; to propagate the myth that you need them .
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Old 12-23-2004, 08:43 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Now aren't we all glad that DB got re-elected....NOT!!! Sure didn't take long for the crap to start hitting the fan again. I think someone tampered with the voting machines <VBG>
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Old 12-23-2004, 11:39 AM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

Being a member of AMA , a club and flying where and when you can does not make you an Out law. We use our rights in a democracy as long as we follow guide lines set by our own fellow modelers Called Rules. People with in our own group cause most of the problems. Even hear there a people that think they are above all others and what they print is gospel. Just pass the little guy by and he will dissapear! It is getting where it doen't work that way any more, there is power in numbers and if you are small in numbers Make a Louder Noise. It works but some times we don't like the results.
Post a sign that states a vicious dog , Keep a Pit bull and who is going to get the flack!

Just a user name! How thing have changed and who has changed them for me[&o]

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Old 12-23-2004, 12:05 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: kingwoodbarney

SNIP

And THAT is what the signs are really for ; to propagate the myth that you need them .

That sir, was a big mouthful!

Unfortunatly, I am afraid you are much more right that wrong.
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Old 12-23-2004, 10:44 PM
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Default RE: Warning: Model Airplanes May Be Dangerous T

ORIGINAL: abel_pranger
<SNIP>
I'm certain if such signage were posted, it would have been used to good effect in her attack on us.
I don't speak for the club, but I expect there will be some serious consideration of the "what if we don't" alternative, that is, opt for a reduction in coverage limits as the lesser of evils.
Indeed.

In a former lifetime, I raced sports cars with a bit of success. First in what SCCA calls "Solo I", then "Solo II", and finally all-out road racing under the Midwest Council of Sports Car Clubs out of Chicago. Had a lot of fun, spent way too much money, and went fast a LOT !

One of the things we had to deal with was the obvious liability associated with driving race cars - high speeds, crashes, spectators, and (fortunately seldom) a fatality. Never hurt a spectator, or a course worker, but we did lose a couple of drivers.

The road racing events were held at sho' nuff' race tracks, complete with medical types, crash and burn crews, the whole enchilada. Worked very very well.

Solo II events were also held on race tracks for the most part, but there was the occaisional event at a large parking lot or county fairground.

Solo I events were rarely held on race tracks with the exception of the long-since-defunct Ontario Motor Speedway.

The Solo I events were also the type of events to attract off-the-street spectators and bunches of folks wanting to go fast sans experience.

One of the locations we used for several years was the old Jungleland facility in Thousand Oaks, which had been driven into bankruptcy by virtue of losing a liability suit - it's not ok to let a lion chew up someone's kid, y'know, especially if the kid belonged to Jane Mansfield.

Anywell, the way we avoided liability for the racing events was that everyone, and I do mean _everyone_, had to sign a liability release form (a waiver) before they were admitted to the facility. Drivers signed a form, crew members signed a form, course and event workers signed a form, and spectators signed a form. Everyone physically present at the facility signed a release/waiver form.

It was properly crafted by a liability specialist, and it stood up to several tests - we never got one subpoena as a result of threats by land sharks.

The 'trick' with the release/waiver form lies in having the individual _sign_ the form (they print their name and then put their autograph on the form). Even in Kalifornia that was good and sufficient to prove that the individual recognized that any liability arising from attending the event was theirs and theirs alone to bear.

I think this business of putting up signs stating that toy airplanes are dangerous is a well and truly BAD idea, for all the reasons previously stated by others. As Abel put it, such a sign would be the same thing as supplying ammunition to the complainant.

I think we need to do a "club by-laws" e-mail campaign again, and let Muncie know what we think.

I also think we need to steer our fearless leaders toward instituting a liability release/waiver form for every form of AMA activity except maybe the non-flying events.

Make the spectators aware that by signing the waiver form that they accept total responsibility for their own conduct and are also enjoined from bringing litigation against the model pilots, clubs, and/or AMA if they are injured while attending one of our events. No signature means an immediate escort from the facility, period.

In the short term, I'm going to campaign in the three local clubs where I hold membership for the club to tell Muncie that we will institute a liability waiver system and that there will not be any signs posted stating that our hobby is dangerous.

$0.02
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