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"Park Flying"

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"Park Flying"

Old 04-17-2005, 06:36 PM
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Bad Tooth
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Default "Park Flying"

So I went to a "park" today near my house to fly my pizza box. There were 2 kids with their dad on one of the baseball diamonds, and no one else. So there was plenty of room for all of us to be out there. I had no sooner taken off the ground and this guy starts yelling at me from across the field, he came all the way over to tell me that what I was doing was "illegal" and that I couldn't be there. Then he left. So I landed and then went over to talk to him. Long story short, he didn't know anything about the subject; just didn't seem to like planes. I apologized if I offended him and then I didn't fly again, just did other things in the park.

Now, I have been at this park many times and this is the first problem that I have had. I have had police officers stop twice and watch me fly, they enjoy it. I do have AMA, and I usually fly my larger stuff at the AMA sanctioned field. I only fly at this park sometimes because it's very close to my house, and the field isn't. Have any of you had similar experiences? Does the AMA have an official position on this? Or does it depend on where you live? (ie: do some communities have specific laws against flying in parks.)

I was told when I started flying some years ago (by a club member) that it is clearly "safer" to fly at the field, but there is nothing wrong with flying "safely" at a park.

Your thoughts please.
Old 04-17-2005, 10:13 PM
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the-plumber
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Default RE: "Park Flying"


ORIGINAL: Strupp22
Does the AMA have an official position on this? Or does it depend on where you live? (ie: do some communities have specific laws against flying in parks.)
AMA's position is that you must fly safely and in accordance with the safety code, which does not prohibit flying in parks.

Local ordinances vary from locale to locale, and sometimes widely. You might avail yourself of a copy of the salient ordinances from your parks and recreation department (whatever they call themselves) just to be sure you're in the clear. Even if there is no extant prohibition against flying in the park, it only takes one complaint and an ordinance will be forthcoming.

Methinks that's what you've run into, a 'soccer Dad' who thinks the park is for the exclusive use of ball-and-stick-game types.
Old 04-17-2005, 10:16 PM
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Default RE: "Park Flying"

Welcome to RC on public facilities so designated for other use.

Get use to it. Different communities have different ordanances. Certainly you should be aware of that. AMA doesn't make law. AMA assists local model airplane people organize to have facilities that tey can use.

Old 04-18-2005, 06:51 AM
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Default RE: "Park Flying"

strupp,
I regularly fly slope gliders at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Slopers there share the air with hang gliders and parasailers and it's a lot of fun. A couple of years ago I was preparing my Gentle Lady for a flight (light winds that day) when this guy came up to me and very officiously announced "You can't fly that thing here!" I shot back that I certainly could and had been doing so for a number of years. He repeated once again that I couldn't fly here. Finally, with my prep complete, I took my glider in hand and asked him WHY . Once more, his booming voice answered "You can't fly that here, THEY MAKE TOO MUCH NOISE!!!" At this point I launched, waited a few seconds, glanced over at him and quietly said "Mister, you're making more noise than this GLIDER will ever make!" He beat a very hasty retreat down the dune and I had a good laugh and a very enjoyable flight.
Some people just have to push their weight around, even if they have absolutely no right to do so. Next time you see that guy who thinks you're illegal, call his bluff and tell him to go ahead and call the cops. You'll probably end up having a good laugh at HIS expense.

papermache
Old 04-18-2005, 08:23 PM
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Bad Tooth
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Default RE: "Park Flying"

Thanks guys. I will look into it a little more. But I'm almost positive that there isn't any ordinance against it "yet" because I have had 2 separate cops stop and admire the flying in the same park. They asked a lot of questions, but not one word about any problem with what I was doing. I wouldn't be surprised though if this guy is planning on proposing a new by-law restricting park flying. I just love people like this.
Old 04-25-2005, 03:41 AM
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Default RE: "Park Flying"

Your question prompted me to take another look at the safety code.
http://www.modelaircraft.org/PDF-files/105.pdf

I posted a question to the AMA. Essentially I asked what site rules means.

Some communities require permits to fly RC aircraft anywhere in thier jurisdiction. I live in Nassau County in NY. An RC permit is required. In order to get the RC permit you have to have a county leisure pass, which permits you to use the parks, and you must have a current AMA card.

Unless you checked, you probably would not realize you were in violation until you filed an insurance claim and were turned down. The code makes it your responsability to discover the site rules, as I read it.

So, even if a cop never stopped me, and even came over to watch, I presume if I was not in posession of a permit, I would be considered in violation of the safety code.

The fact that a cop never said anything is not a legal endorsemet of your activity, as I understand it.

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