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Contest Director and problem flyer

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Contest Director and problem flyer

Old 09-06-2013, 01:37 PM
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pfalzaflyer
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Default Contest Director and problem flyer

I've been the Contest Director for the past several years, for my club's annual Class C Fun Fly.

One of the founding members of my club was flying at our annual Fun Fly. He was flying straight at the pits and spectators at low altitude taking photos with a camera mounted to his plane. An estimate of how far away and how high would be 50 to 75 feet before pulling up into an Immelmann type of maneuver to line up to make another pass and 15-20 feet high, straight in at the crowd. I have considered this flyer to have been reckless in the past and this one incidence angered me no end!

As the CD, it's my job to determine what is safe and what is not and I take corrective action if needed. I did take corrective action and this set this guy off! He is directing his anger at me, stating I am coming up with Bull-Bleep rules! He is a member of the AMA, so he has access to all the rules and guidelines.

I am somewhat baffled over what to do! I am quitting being the CD for the club with this guy participating. The fact that I feel his anger has very little basis, makes me wonder about even continuing to be a member of this club!

I want the members of my club to use good safety practices; but, his being one of the founding members and also one of the clubs instructors. I am thinking his philosophys are being transferred to his students.

I really don't know what to do and am asking people with more experience in these matters, how to handle this!
Old 09-06-2013, 03:56 PM
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speedracerntrixie
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I for one think you did the correct thing. We are at a time when the R/C community are being looked at very carefully. Drones and GPS guided aircraft are popping up all over the place. We can't afford people being irresponsible and causing injury to others. I say hold your ground and simply state what was done was in the sake of safety. It is always more difficult to correct a situation after it has happened. I would suggest that in future events have a pilots meeting before the flying starts and explain your safety expectations to the participating pilots including that at no time will a pilot fly directly towards the audience and establish a dead line ( usually the far edge of the runway ) and if someone crosses that deadline at any time he is instructed to land. Appoint a flight boss or better yet a few of them that can take 2 hour shifts. His job is to let guys know when they can taxi out to the runway, assist in landings and keep an eye out for safety violations. Once guys know what they can't do at an event it's easier to remind them.
Old 09-06-2013, 04:13 PM
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DadsToysBG
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I agree with speed. I've had the same situation as a CD. I was lucky in that he was a friend and took what I said with a smile and said"sorry". Dennis
Old 09-06-2013, 04:36 PM
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You did the right thing. I hate to be the bad cop at our field and some times just feel other long standing members should help enforce safety rules. Most guys just sit back and want to let someone else do the dirty jobs. Don't feel so bad. Two old members of our club left a few years ago because they could not accept that we were going to install safety barrier fences to separate the pilots from the runway. They joined another club that already has safety barrier fences, huh?. They just could not accept change at our club, and were negative individuals most times. And like your situation, one was even an instructor, a horrible one at that. Anyway, keep on doing what you are doing...safety first in this hobby of ours! Discuss the situtation calmly and objectively at your monthly club meeting to ensure the officers are fully informed so they can back you up. Jon
Old 09-06-2013, 05:08 PM
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combatpigg
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How much support did you get from the other participants when this guy went ape on you..?
They might not realize it, but they also have a duty to you to help you out with a situation like that. If not, then it enboldens the jerk to continue with his chimp-out instead of simply snuffing it out right from the get-go with a massive show of solidarity.
Old 09-06-2013, 06:13 PM
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804
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From what little info you give, I would have a hard time making a call.
If your club has specific rules against what he did, such as no flying crosswise to the runway a certain distance to the pits/spectator area (if that's what he did),
or he violated any of the club or AMA safety guidelines by flying on the pit side of the safety line, or you discussed something at the pilot's meeting, then
no problem, you made the right call.

If he did something that is regularly done, but you feel he shouldn't do it because it was a special circumstance (fun fly with spectators),
that's a harder call. As long as he didn't break any rules, you might have to just bury the hatchet and maybe try to discuss
it with him and the club later to clear up what your expectations as CD will be in the future.
It might also depend somewhat on what he was flying and how he was flying it.

More info please.
Old 09-07-2013, 10:13 AM
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Academy of Model Aeronautics National Model Aircraft Safety CodeEffective January 1, 2011
A. GENERAL: A model aircraft is a non-human-carrying aircraft capable of sustained flight in the atmosphere. It may not exceed limitations of this code and is
intended exclusively for sport, recreation and/or competition. All model flights must be conducted in accordance with this safety code and any additional
rules specific to the flying site.
1. Model aircraft will not be flown:
(a) In a careless or reckless manner.
You are the CD, if in your opinion the aircraft was being flown in a "careless or reckless manner" then there is nothing to feel bad or apologise for........................... The AMA Safety Code is clear.

Brad
Old 09-08-2013, 05:49 AM
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Originally Posted by bradpaul View Post
You are the CD, if in your opinion the aircraft was being flown in a "careless or reckless manner" then there is nothing to feel bad or apologise for........................... The AMA Safety Code is clear.

Brad
As much as I dislike agreeing with Brad Paul, in this case he is 100% correct. Being a Contest Director can be somewhat like being a military officer. There are times when the "Ol' Buddy" stuff has to be thrown in the Waste Can. If you don't have the guts for the job, then don't take the job. Been at it for 50 years, and sometimes it gets tough, especially when one has to get tough with someone that has been a friend for sometime.
Old 09-08-2013, 04:25 PM
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bkdavy
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Originally Posted by pfalzaflyer View Post
I have considered this flyer to have been reckless in the past and this one incidence angered me no end!
While I agree that you were 100 percent correct in asking him not to perform this specific maneuver, it is not clear how that message was delivered. If you were angry in your delivery, that might have led to his angry response. I have had cases at my field where people are performing reckless maneuvers, and have tried to politely bring it to their attention. They are usually understanding and responsive.

Sometimes the hardest part of being a CD is responding coolly to a tense situation.

Good luck!
Brad
Old 09-08-2013, 07:48 PM
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littlecrankshaf
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Originally Posted by pfalzaflyer View Post
I've been the Contest Director for the past several years, for my club's annual Class C Fun Fly.

One of the founding members of my club was flying at our annual Fun Fly. He was flying straight at the pits and spectators at low altitude taking photos with a camera mounted to his plane. An estimate of how far away and how high would be 50 to 75 feet before pulling up into an Immelmann type of maneuver to line up to make another pass and 15-20 feet high, straight in at the crowd. I have considered this flyer to have been reckless in the past and this one incidence angered me no end!

As the CD, it's my job to determine what is safe and what is not and I take corrective action if needed. I did take corrective action and this set this guy off! He is directing his anger at me, stating I am coming up with Bull-Bleep rules! He is a member of the AMA, so he has access to all the rules and guidelines.

I am somewhat baffled over what to do! I am quitting being the CD for the club with this guy participating. The fact that I feel his anger has very little basis, makes me wonder about even continuing to be a member of this club!

I want the members of my club to use good safety practices; but, his being one of the founding members and also one of the clubs instructors. I am thinking his philosophys are being transferred to his students.

I really don't know what to do and am asking people with more experience in these matters, how to handle this!
From what I learned here you should just yank the transmitter out of his hands, land the plane and tell him to pack up and leave...

Seriously, many extenuating factors have not been accounted for in this incident, as you have laid it out... Like was the model a slowstik or giant scale warbird or something in-between. But in any event, it was your call...you made the call and that's that...no real need to air it here...
Old 09-09-2013, 08:24 AM
  #11  
pfalzaflyer
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Thank you to everyone who responded!
Old 09-09-2013, 10:32 AM
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1320Fastback
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1. Model aircraft will not be flown:
(a) In a careless or reckless manner.

As the CD or the SO it is up to you what is careless or reckless. It is 100% your call and that's final.

If the guy don't like it he can cry to the AMA.
Old 09-09-2013, 11:11 AM
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mscic-RCU
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Originally Posted by 1320Fastback View Post
1. Model aircraft will not be flown:
(a) In a careless or reckless manner.

As the CD or the SO it is up to you what is careless or reckless. It is 100% your call and that's final.

If the guy don't like it he can cry to the AMA.
+1 for me. As a CD myself I sometimes have to make the hard call. It is entirely up to you if his flying is safe or not. If your account is accurate, then he is one radio glitch or clevis failure from disaster. If he doesn't think it is possible, have him call the family of the helicopter pilot that was killed and ask them. Personally, I wouldn't run away from this fight and I would make the club replace me as CD, not quit.
Old 09-12-2013, 09:24 AM
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Ed
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Recklessness is a disease for some. We have a showoff who fly's straight at the spectators almost every flight that he makes, because he thinks that it's cool to turn and immelman away at the last second. He has been warned about this by at least two clubs now, but yet he continues to do it. The need to be an exhibitionist is so strong that he just cannot change. He's a popular, egotistical, pompous a-ho, who has been told about this time and time again, yet he continues to get away with it, because the dumb people watching it think that it's cool.
Old 09-13-2013, 06:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Ed View Post
Recklessness is a disease for some. We have a showoff who fly's straight at the spectators almost every flight that he makes, because he thinks that it's cool to turn and immelman away at the last second. He has been warned about this by at least two clubs now, but yet he continues to do it. The need to be an exhibitionist is so strong that he just cannot change. He's a popular, egotistical, pompous a-ho, who has been told about this time and time again, yet he continues to get away with it, because the dumb people watching it think that it's cool.
Where are the two clubs' officers? Are they OFFICERS or just poliically - correct "good ol' buddy" types that fill a position that no others care to do as there is work involved in such positions?
In a future event that this person will attend, invite your AMA District Vice President to come and attend your event. He lives in NM, is really a nice fellow, well informed, and very interested in club events. He may well be interested in observing such activity as you describe.
Old 09-16-2013, 09:30 PM
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[QUOTE=Hossfly;
In a future event that this person will attend, invite your AMA District Vice President to come and attend your event. He lives in NM, is really a nice fellow, well informed, and very interested in club events. He may well be interested in observing such activity as you describe.[/QUOTE]

This is the best remedy given yet and I am curious why the original poster hasn't responded to it..?
If this man came here in all honesty to find a cure...here it is.
Old 09-17-2013, 04:43 AM
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Originally Posted by combatpigg View Post
This is the best remedy given yet and I am curious why the original poster hasn't responded to it..?
If this man came here in all honesty to find a cure...here it is.
Right after I suggested the "yank the transmitter right out of the guys hands" while he was flying strategy, he said thanks...
Old 09-26-2013, 07:56 AM
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pfalzaflyer
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Originally Posted by combatpigg View Post
This is the best remedy given yet and I am curious why the original poster hasn't responded to it..?
If this man came here in all honesty to find a cure...here it is.
A good idea and one I would try if I were to continue in the CD's position. It is time for someone else to step up to the plate and take on this responsibility.

Littlecrankshaft is correct, not everyone who responded, deserved my thanks!
Old 12-18-2013, 11:38 AM
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crash99
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After reading this thread I might not agree woth you guys. If I read this right the aircam aircraft was getting a shot of the crowd but never crossed the runway, unless it is a ultra wide runway.

you said this made you angry. As a CD you can never get angry. If you become angry then you become one of those fun police guys and no one respects the fun police.

you did not give all the information nor a video link to the aircam footage. Video always tells the truth. If you get angry performing the CD duty then you might be correct by not putting yourself in that role.

I would like to see the video to see what happened. The one radio glitch / hardware thought would also apply flying over the runway or next to the runway as well. There are many videos on mishaps like that.

Crash99
Old 12-22-2013, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by crash99 View Post
If I read this right the aircam aircraft was getting a shot of the crowd but never crossed the runway, unless it is a ultra wide runway.
Like most things, everything is fine until something goes wrong. If the plane isn't flying towards the crowd when something goes wrong then there's less chance it will end up in the crowd. It's no guarantee that it won't, but there's less chance and when the something-going-wrong is a radio failue then even the most skilled pilot is reduced to spectator.

I guess there will always be a level of risk we have to accept in the sport, but if sombody is putting their plane into positions that can cause serious damage if their TX went off the air, then it's probably bordering on a bit to risky, especially if there's unsuspecting public involved.
Old 12-22-2013, 05:04 PM
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combatpigg
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Right crash99...nobody died, so what's the problem...?
Old 12-23-2013, 04:29 AM
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804
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The problem is, as I noted above,
the flyer in question apparently did not break any
AMA or club rules.
Old 12-23-2013, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by 804 View Post
The problem is, as I noted above,
the flyer in question apparently did not break any
AMA or club rules.
Aparently? You were there?

What some fail to acept is that under AMA rules the CD is GOD. If in his opinion, and only his opinion, the flying was careless or reckless then that is all it takes to ground a pilot. Like some calls in football the penality is not reviewable no matter what the instant replay says.

So what is the recourse? Other than *****ing online?.................... use a different CD at your next club event, good luck at finding one though. The guys that become CD's are almost always of the personality type that "the rules are the rules" AND THAT IS GOOD.
Old 12-23-2013, 06:38 AM
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Rules are rules.

People are people.

CD's (like ref's) are people and people get mad and offended etc. I know because I'm both a hockey ref and a CD.

Most of the time a deep breath and adults acting like adults are all that's required to iron out issues. Think about it, most of the people in this hobby are generally good people.

Brad, you're a RCACF? I may be down next Saturday.
Old 12-23-2013, 06:53 AM
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One of the things that I have always pondered is why every club hosted event seems to feel a need to have a Contest Director...especially events that aren't even contests. We, our club, have had many events with someone simply named ED (event director)...FWIW we haven't had many actual "contest" type events but the few we have still didn't have an official AMA CD presiding over it, as they weren't AMA rulebook events... I know, I know...there will be those that just love the sound of "our event is sanctioned" but for many just for "fun events" the event coordination(area protection) that a sanction is normally used for is not necessary.

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