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New Rules

Old 08-21-2005, 09:23 PM
  #1  
bbbair
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Default New Rules

OK the new MAAC Rules have been in force for most of the flying season now, So what do people think about them?

At our club we spent a lot of money setting up safety barriers and had lots of arguments about the finer details, in the end we complied with the letter
of the law. (we like our insurance to be in force)

BUT;

I have traveled to some fields (who shall remain nameless) . . . where the finer rules are discreetly ignored. [X(]

Point in fact, the average age of modelers is 60, there are a lot of fellows that are over 65 with medical problems, and they have ΒΌ scale AC (it's easier to see a big plane).

Currently they are expected to shuffle their AC and start up kit to the designated 'Start Up Area', and then carry the now running AC to the flight line for take off. [:'(]

The bottom line is that they don't, they set up in the pits, start their engines and Taxi out. (carefully) After their flight, the engine is shut down just off of the flight line and the plane is towed back to the owner's spot in the pits.

I spoke to one flier that is well into his 70s, in mid August he was having his first flight of the season because of these new rules. Once he found out that they were being ignored he came out, prior to that he refused to fly due to these new rules.

How many fliers have we lost (will we loose) due to these restrictive rules?

So what's happening at an unnamed club near you?
Old 08-21-2005, 11:03 PM
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mgaddison
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Default RE: New Rules

Unfortunately, our club actually folded due to the new safety rules.

We were limited for space and could not provide the proper setbacks in order to "fly safe." We also were a small club and could not afford all the fencing needed to separate the different areas on our field.

So rather than leave our executive open for liabilities, we folded.

Some quit flying for this year until we could find another site while others flew "at their own risk." And we are not sure what we are going to do next year.

We all flew safely. No accidents ever. But that is the thing about accidents, nobody ever plans to have one. So rather than take the chance and not be covered because of a rather large loophole, we did what we did.

The rules make sense on paper and may save someone, but they also may take some groups right out of the picture.
Old 08-23-2005, 09:27 AM
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britbrat
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Default RE: New Rules

Our club is essentially bankrupt right now, due to the cost of re-configuring our field & facilities. We can't finish the required work this year & we have had to levy the members for more money just to buy gas & parts for the lawn tractors in order to fly at all. Not all of the members can meet the levy. At present, we don't have a spectator fence & we won't have one until next year (assuming enough members return).

We generally start up in the pits (we have pit tables) & place the models on the ground on the flight-line side of the pit fence, then taxi to the runway. That process evolved because many members flat out refused to carry their running planes to the runway (or to re-start them at the runway verge). It was that way, or they would go home. If we press them, they will simply quit -- we have had one leave already over the new rules & he flies on his home property now.
Old 08-23-2005, 11:55 AM
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bbbair
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Default RE: New Rules

OWWW!

Clubs closing and lost members - I don't think that was what the Committee had intended - what's that Old Saying - "The Road to He** is Paved with Good Intentions!"

I think that 'mgaddisson' said it best - "The rules make sense on paper and may save someone, but they also may take some groups right out of the picture."

I don't know what magic formula was used to work out the numbers that sparked this situation - but it scares me.

Old 08-23-2005, 04:30 PM
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kenair
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Default RE: New Rules

At a few fly ins I attended this summer, some of the clubs in order to comply with the new MAAC rule of the barreir fence have erected the snow fence at 4' high running along for a fair lenght longitudionaly.

The height of this fence in it self is a safety hazard as it is hard to see over top of it to the far corner of the runway.

I can see in the future where this fence will be the cause of a serious accident.
Old 08-23-2005, 11:25 PM
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ira d
 
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Default RE: New Rules

I think the rule about haveing to carry your plane to the runway is so stupid no
reason for it at all, we have the same rule here with the AMA one thing about
stupid rules they tend to largely be ingored.

also it would be hard for MAAC or the AMA to deny a claim if someone was hit by
a plane taxing to the runway, most likley the person hit would be a member so
they would have pay on his behalf if the didnt pay on behalf of the plane owner.
Old 08-24-2005, 12:04 PM
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Sharpy01
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Default RE: New Rules

I don't understand the need to micro-manage.

Entrench the basic rules that are easily and universally applied..........ie:range check at the beginning of each day and keep the airplane in front of you.

Allow the clubs to set their own restrictions related to their field as is needed and keep a record ..............as was done in the past. MAAC's recent rule changes/additions, particularly those that use undefined terminology, such as "3D flying" & "certified demo pilots" and designated heights restricting certain types of flying, is stupid. It only opens the door for liberal interpretations of these terms and restrictions, which will bite everyone.

Ken makes a good point about the fencing restricting vison. Being able to see you plane is the most important safety factor and when it's retricted by "safety".................?

We should be working to reverse many of these new restrictions as many are local problems that someone felt needed national attention, instead of dealing with the problem as it arose. I'd be curious to see membership numbers and club numbers compared over tha past few years and see what/if any difference there is.

........somebody else contact HQ for the info, I'm sure they are tired of hearing from me.
Old 08-24-2005, 12:27 PM
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Jim_McIntyre
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Default RE: New Rules

Well, I had to check to see if the local church was still standing before I posted this but .... here it is.....

I agree with Ken on this one....

....

Ok, I said it.

I also find the carry-out rule ludicrous and generally ignored, for good reason. My local club attempted to address the issue in another way. They erected fences behind the pilot stations....

I must admit I had issues with this before actually tying it but, once I actually experienced it, I think it was a good idea. The fences are set back far enough that I'm not concerned about backing into them, and are built to protect from multiple angles (basically a V shape). It addresses the potential of being taxiied into while flying by some out of control aircraft, while not creating any additional hazards of trying to carry a 55lb bomber with engines running![X(]
Old 08-24-2005, 02:38 PM
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britbrat
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Default RE: New Rules

Wellll now -- we are getting somewhere here in the land of brotherly love


Jim, in the case of your club's fences behind the pilots -- I would be concerned about the fence blocking an escape path, or actualy breaking someone's leg, as they attempted to duck an incomming unguided missile.

The no-taxi rule is just crap in my opinion & there is no one in our club that disagrees with me. To my knowledge, our club has never had a taxi accident from an aircraft taxiing to the runway. There was one accident years ago, when a plane hit a pilot after it landed --this resulted in our club installing individual pilot fences.

We have individual 2m wide x 1m high curved safety fences in front of the pilots at each pilot station, with 1.5m wide x 2m tall side-shield fences at each end of the row of pilot stations --- nothing behind the pilots until you get to the 1m high pit fence. The experimental side shields are generally accepted as a good idea because they provide some side protection for the whole line of pilot stations. However, they could possibly block the view of a wayward plane that passed behind the end of the line of pilot stations. We have some reservations there, but it hasn't been a problem yet

We have nothing yet for the spectator fence behind the pit tables -- no more money (debt, in fact). The cost of that fencing will have us running even further behind our budget next year before we even start the year's activities.
Old 08-24-2005, 03:41 PM
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Jim_McIntyre
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Default RE: New Rules

We managed to find someone removing chain link from their property, they were happy to have us truck it away.....

I had the same reservation about the fences behind pilot... until I saw it set up. They are not tight behind the pilot station, nor are they fixed to the ground. More like a wide V shaped hockey net. Like many things, it sounds more restricting in description but I think it works well in practice. Safety is a practice more than a process, I think this practice makes sense and, although your point is valid, I don't think it's as much of a hazard as you might envision. Certainly less of a hazard than the one it attempts to address (and definitely less than the hazard of carrying large aircraft with engines running)
Old 08-24-2005, 05:17 PM
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Default RE: New Rules

Wow!!!!

I would have posted earlier but on the day that Jim and Ken agreed on something I simply had to run out and get a lottery ticket

I think Marc has hit the issue right on as well. "Say what you do" (document local rules) "Do what you say" (Gently enforce those rules). This is one method of forming the "reasonable person defence" against litigation in that you did what any reasonable person would do in similar circumstances ... and you're right Jim I will not carry out my 28 lb B-25 twin.


JH
Old 08-24-2005, 07:20 PM
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ronnieo1
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Default RE: New Rules

The only planes CARRIED out to any field in our zone I've visited is hand- held electrics. And all the fences are quite adequate for viewing the plane at any angle, unless someone's flying behind a baseball backstop. As for safety, a Large plane got loose at the NATS after landing and went right into a pilot stand,missing the adjoining pilot and scattering some judges, but it did it's friggin job. Get used to it..that's what everyone is told who barks about it.
Old 08-24-2005, 08:31 PM
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Sharpy01
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Default RE: New Rules

........so, Ronnieo:

What you are saying is some rules you don't like because they personally don't fit you are not good,

,,,,,,,,but the ones you perceive, or think, are good......... nobody has the right to discuss their merits? ie: "Get used to it"

You know, a clear dome would protect everyone 100%.................it would do it's "Friggin Job". Should we all bow to a rule like that if it was proposed by a few?

Your very attitude that some are good and some are not is an example of the diverse nature of our membership. Quite frankly, Me and the members of my club don't need the "Ronnieos" of the association telling us what is best for us! Keep the general rules very general and I'll look after my safety ..............while you look after yours. Your club is free to dome themselves in and require that all visitors stand under the dome, but I don't want to fly at your club. [:-]
Old 08-24-2005, 08:46 PM
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adaptabl
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Default RE: New Rules


ORIGINAL: Sharpy01

........so, Ronnieo:

What you are saying is some rules you don't like because they personally don't fit you are not good,

,,,,,,,,but the ones you perceive, or think, are good......... nobody has the right to discuss their merits? ie: "Get used to it"

You know, a clear dome would protect everyone 100%.................it would do it's "Friggin Job". Should we all bow to a rule like that if it was proposed by a few?

Your very attitude that some are good and some are not is an example of the diverse nature of our membership. Quite frankly, Me and the members of my club don't need the "Ronnieos" of the association telling us what is best for us! Keep the general rules very general and I'll look after my safety ..............while you look after yours. Your club is free to dome themselves in and require that all visitors stand under the dome, but I don't want to fly at your club. [:-]
The problem is we all have the same insurance. An accident at any of our clubs could cost us all our insurance(another accident or two and no carrier will take us on). Some of the rules may not seem like a good idea to some menbers, but we all have to go the extra mile to keep our fields safe. Extra fences and new rules benefit everyone.

General rules may be fine for you. Your club may be safer than the rules require. The problem is the club in the next city may not be safe and we will all suffer.
Old 08-24-2005, 09:25 PM
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jhelps
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Default RE: New Rules

ORIGINAL: adaptabl


The problem is we all have the same insurance. An accident at any of our clubs could cost us all our insurance(another accident or two and no carrier will take us on). Some of the rules may not seem like a good idea to some menbers, but we all have to go the extra mile to keep our fields safe. Extra fences and new rules benefit everyone.

General rules may be fine for you. Your club may be safer than the rules require. The problem is the club in the next city may not be safe and we will all suffer.
If you truely believe that one more accident will cancel our coverage then you should hang up your planes now and sell all your kit before it becomes valueless because we are going to have another accident !!! The law of averages dictates it. The barriers are not going to prevent a run away aircraft in flight from seeking out a target nearby (house , car, etc anything within a 1/4 mile or more) and eventually random chance is going to result in a bad event. Even Ronnie's description was not "No one panicked and the barrier did its job" It was " a Large plane got loose at the NATS after landing and went right into a pilot stand,missing the adjoining pilot and scattering some judges ". Sounds more like luck than good design, but perhaps it is simply Ron's brief description of the event that makes it seem that way. Do not misinterpret what I am saying, I am not advocating do nothing, I am advocating reasonable rules with value added.

As for insurance, we will likely always be able to get insurance ... it is the premium that will change and we will have to change with it. Car insurance used to be hundreds ... it is now thousands. Perhaps in future a much larger portion of our dues will be insurance premiums (~13.50 right now) and we will pay them if we wish to fly. Maybe we need different rates for different classes of aircraft or pilot experience or whatever IF research shows that certain groups are at higher risk than others, however as we do not record information on the accidents that we do have (and there are LOTS) we have no way of knowing what causes accidents. In fact that would likely be the best safety rule we could adopt ... to report all accidents and try and identify causes.

JH
Old 08-24-2005, 11:25 PM
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Sharpy01
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Default RE: New Rules

ORIGINAL: adaptabl


The problem is we all have the same insurance. An accident at any of our clubs could cost us all our insurance(another accident or two and no carrier will take us on). Some of the rules may not seem like a good idea to some menbers, but we all have to go the extra mile to keep our fields safe. Extra fences and new rules benefit everyone.

General rules may be fine for you. Your club may be safer than the rules require. The problem is the club in the next city may not be safe and we will all suffer.
here's a question?

Did the insurance company ask for these new rules?

The answer is, "no". All you do by micro-managing and adding national rules is providing more reasons for the insurance company to NOT pay. They don't care about our rules because ultimately, each incident will be judged on it's own merit......or lack thereof.

Lawyers didn't care if we've established a minimum altitude for 3D flight .................... because they wouldn't have had any idea that 3D existed or what the hell it was, up until it showed up in our safety code. Lawyers don't care about safety........they care about who has the deepest pockets and that is where they go.

General basic rules work. Individual club rules need to be designed specifically for the needs of that club . The problem comes when local club members don't have the balls to address safety issues with their own club members and instead, go to their obscure Zone meetings and propose national rules based on a club issue that they don't have the balls to deal with head-on. Because a very small percentage of members take notice of the national politics, it's get's pushed through the system and the rest are left scratching their heads wondering why this stuff is being forced upon them and where the hell it came from?

It's no secret why Jim actually found some common ground with Ken.........................it's because they are both active flyers and are not afraid to speak up when safety issues arrise. I'll bet my left nut that many of these new rules come from the peanut gallery who sit and whine about everything, but rarely fly their 20 year old .40 sized birds. They don't like anything that deviates from their "historic" view of the hobby.

We're not babies, we don't need big-brother watching us. The accident early in the year was a .40 sized trainer that all the rules in the world likely would not have prevented..........aside from Ronneo's dome. ***** happens and will happen again, pay attention to what is going on in the air ............. Take responsibility for your own actions and stop waiting for some governing body to do your thinking for you.
Old 08-25-2005, 07:43 AM
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Jim_McIntyre
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Default RE: New Rules

ORIGINAL: Sharpy01
What you are saying is some rules you don't like because they personally don't fit you are not good,
[sm=confused.gif]

Huh? I didn't read that in Ron's post, The way I understood it, he's simply commenting on what he's observed....

I really don't get the dome being attributed to Ronnie either ... why are you picking on my buddy again?[sm=punching.gif][sm=lol.gif]

=========================

adaptabl said it best "The problem is the club in the next city may not be safe and we will all suffer."

I'll only add that I fear more for some of the rogue flyers I've seen. Flying in an uncontrolled public area with zero crowd control is begging for a major incident.[:@]

If you continue to put more restrictive rules you in place, you will only be penalizing the safe flyers (and push some into rebellion).

I think a good analogy would be with security. "Locks only deter honest people". to paraphrase "rules only regulate safe people". It's the unsafe that are the real issue, and these can only be addressed through education ... and then not all will respond.[]

Should our safety committee be concentrating more on education than continuously revising rules?
Old 08-25-2005, 08:44 AM
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ronnieo1
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Default RE: New Rules

ORIGINAL: jhelps

ORIGINAL: adaptabl


The problem is we all have the same insurance. An accident at any of our clubs could cost us all our insurance(another accident or two and no carrier will take us on). Some of the rules may not seem like a good idea to some menbers, but we all have to go the extra mile to keep our fields safe. Extra fences and new rules benefit everyone.

General rules may be fine for you. Your club may be safer than the rules require. The problem is the club in the next city may not be safe and we will all suffer.
If you truely believe that one more accident will cancel our coverage then you should hang up your planes now and sell all your kit before it becomes valueless because we are going to have another accident !!! The law of averages dictates it. The barriers are not going to prevent a run away aircraft in flight from seeking out a target nearby (house , car, etc anything within a 1/4 mile or more) and eventually random chance is going to result in a bad event. Even Ronnie's description was not "No one panicked and the barrier did its job" It was " a Large plane got loose at the NATS after landing and went right into a pilot stand,missing the adjoining pilot and scattering some judges ". Sounds more like luck than good design, but perhaps it is simply Ron's brief description of the event that makes it seem that way. Do not misinterpret what I am saying, I am not advocating do nothing, I am advocating reasonable rules with value added.



JH
Exactly Jeff....the fence may never stop all planes that are uncontrolled from hitting anyone, but it lessened the ODDS of MAAC making another claim to the insurer, for an errant gasser with a broken tailwheel running 1/3 throttle with a 20 inch carbon fibre blade heading at 5 people was quite unpredictable, the barrier absolutely did it's job.
As for Sharpies comment, I agree with Jim...there was no attempt to circumvent any rules, sometimes given the circumstances, some inane rules that have been created may not apply to everyone due to field layouts or other restricted reasons. For a person to pack up and quit a club because they can't deal with the new rules is silly, especially when flying sites are getting rarer to find. At our club, we had some adamant non-conforms that eventually got used to it, and the most staunch critics have actually become to like it. Taxiing is restricted to the ends of the field...there is no CUTTING through between stations because we have two end stations with barriers for takeoffs and landings only...eliminating having to CARRY a plane running.
I whole-hearted agree with Jeff and Jimmy....reasonable rules make for a safer and happier R/C community. At no point would I advocate not following the important basic rules ( and I don't have to explain those to anyone), rather, make sure that your field cuts down the ODDS of something happening by attempting to follow as many as possible.
If you don't like the rules as they are written, go to your Zone meeting or the AGM and have them altered. Forums don't change the rules, but it lets people know what's working at certain fields and what isn't.
As for the dome....I wouldnt be caught dead in a dome after Palmer or Dennis has just gone to an ALL-YOU-CAN EAT dinner and then went flying at the station next to me.
Old 08-25-2005, 09:43 AM
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Sharpy01
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Default RE: New Rules

...what the heck is going on here. I think I agree with most of Ronnieo's last post.
[&:]

Agreed that forums may not be where changes are made, but they can certainly be where changes are born and nurtured?

Maybe I'd be better off to make a plea to those out there who feel the need to add more written rules to the safety code;

"Stop it".

I personally like pilot barriers and protective fencing. It's one of the first things we put up at the club I helped build a few years back, long before it was dictated. It worked for us, but what about the club down the road that flys off the grounds of a quiet regional airport with full blessing of the airport manager.............but they are not allowed to put up fencing? Scratch one club, add a few more "rogue" flyers to a growing list.

Jim writes:

If you continue to put more restrictive rules you in place, you will only be penalizing the safe flyers (and push some into rebellion).

I think a good analogy would be with security. "Locks only deter honest people". to paraphrase "rules only regulate safe people". It's the unsafe that are the real issue, and these can only be addressed through education ... and then not all will respond
.


Couldn't of put that any better.

Most club safety problems are "individual" and need to be addressed that way..........not by imposing more national rules.

Old 08-25-2005, 10:31 AM
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kenair
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Default RE: New Rules

Jim and I get to split the winnings of Jeff's lottery ticket.

If MAAC has x number of rules.
If club y has a accident with a personal injury.

Lawyer z will find one rule that the club was not following or not able to comply / enforce, with so many rules there will be always one.

thus (x + y) / z = deep doo do

Perhaps it's time for maac to take a close look this whole safety / risk issue, in our zone I heard some very able wrcc club executives have resigned from the executive over the safety liability issue, now I here some clubs have folded over this issue, too bad.
Old 08-25-2005, 11:10 AM
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Default RE: New Rules

ORIGINAL: Sharpy01
... but what about the club down the road that flys off the grounds of a quiet regional airport with full blessing of the airport manager.............but they are not allowed to put up fencing? Scratch one club, add a few more "rogue" flyers to a growing list.
I know of a few of those.... in 2 cases (the rest I can't be sure of, since I haven't visited them in some time) they constructed removeable barriers. Basically a foldable aluminum frame with snow fencing cable-tied on. A couple tent stakes (or sand bags) and you're in business.

-------------

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