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  • It's available just simply to inform about the rules without posting meaningless pictures? =)

  • Somebody identify that destroyed helicopter ? Im dont found any records about showed the firefighter heli crash: 

  • Developer

    Thank you Gary.  I appreciate your efforts.

  • It isn't reasonable to say that a drone hitting a helicopter won't cause damage, it certainly can and if it hit the tail rotor (highly unlikely) it could possibly even be catastrophic.

    The bottom line is our "drones" (Phantoms, etc) don't belong anywhere near manned aircraft and we already know that.

    I totally agree with Craig that we have done a singularly bad job of educating the public about reasonable methods of operation, although for the most part I don't think we looked at it as "our job".

    The fact is, nobody else is in the position to take a proactive stance on this.

    OK the AMA have sort of tried, but their efforts only reach the already existing RC community and the bulk of the growing problem is from naive users who have no previous experience with RC or any aspect of our hobby.

    On my DronesAreFun website I greatly stress responsible safe operation, but that also only reaches the more committed of the whole "drone" movement who pretty much already know better.

    Of course other agencies are railing against "drones", seeing a clear and present danger to their safety and in some cases their livelihood.

    It would benefit us to try and project a more public image of stressing safety and responsible (non-privacy invading) operation.

    In that regard it might be worthwhile on our sites home page to put a small but highly visible responsible operation summary / banner with a quick link to more extensive information, at least then JQ public could see we are serious about this.

    I am going to do that on all of my web sites pages.

    Further, it might help if we got our most highly visible member (Hi there Chris) to start stumping our emphasis on responsible public minded operation.

    God I hate politics, but we are currently looked at as a politically incorrect group and we need to change that.

    We are at the very forefront of this and it is incumbent on us to take control.

    Best regards,


  • Don't drone batteries only last about 10 minutes?  Why do they ground the choppers for hours?
    And, doesn't the technology exist to scan for radio waves, and isn't it relatively inexpensive and even available to hobbyists?   Then, why aren't these fire people able to catch the drone flyers who must be close?

    Maybe we should go there w/ some radios and directional antenna and find the drone pilots ourselves. Since there's all this media hysteria, maybe we can start a business of it, and get some of the tax payers money to help the fire service do their jobs.

    And there really needs to be some testing done.  People seem to think of drones as solid objects.. I'd argue that birds are more solid, because they are held together by their muscle and tendons.  The drone will shatter and spread around the outside of the vehicle it impacts.  That picture of the airplane above is completely unnecessary, and has nothing to do w/ this situation.  Choppers aren't moving at 400mph, and the drone is basically stationary.  A drone hitting a slow moving chopper anywhere other than the blades would simply bump off of it.  I don't know, but would guess the blades would simply chop the light plastic drone into pieces.  I've seen choppers delivering air conditioners, dealing with all sorts of construction debris kicked up into the air, and no one stopped the non emergency AC delivery. 

  • Once again, nobody in this thread is "missing the point" or advocating that this should be allowed.  The only point that I'm making is the inappropriate BS hysteria over the matter.  It's outrageous to me that the incident commanders at a WILDFIRE have been made so fearful of a 2lb plastic toy that all operations must cease for hours. Every time a pilot reports seeing a drone on the final approach to an airport, they don't close the airport for 2 hours. Yet they'll allow a fire to keep burning.  It blows my mind.

  • I will like to pose an other point of view.. let's assume that a Phantom hits the main blades of a helicopter, most likely it won't brig it down as because they are meant to withstand impacts with birds and power lines. A sure consequence is that the aircraft has to be grounded immediately and one of the blades will need to be replaced. Considering that an average cost of a single blade is around $120K, who is going to pay for that? The drone operator, that in most cases is unidentified? Or the tax payers?  And who is going to pay for the loss of vegetation due to the Helicopter unable to stop the fire because it was grounded.  Now think about the same  situation but the Phantom going into a airliner turbine engine.. who is going to pay up to $800K in repair cost of the engine ( yep that is what cost to repair a pretty bad bird strike on a jet engine ). And to all of those that keep saying that drones pose no threat to manned aviation like birds.. please enjoy the picture below!


  • Developer

    Most of you seem to be avoiding or missing the main point here: Forest fires are restricted airspace. It is illegal to fly any kind of non firefighting aircraft in there and the simple reality is that we have not done the job of educating people to stay out of the airspace so now other agencies and organizations are having to step in and do that for us.

    And you are right the general public is not informed and their perception is their reality. Coming along now and saying "Our two pound toy isn't going to spy on your and it probably won't take out your full sized aircraft so you are stupid for overreacting and you have nothing to worry about" isn't going to cut it.

    We need to be proactive and start self regulating and self educating otherwise the uninformed are going to be making the rules for us to follow because we as the informed ones didn't create them in the first place.

  • The fact that we are arguing about this is stupid.  If you are not a part of the operation just stay out.  We all know that a two pound toy will not likely bring down a full size craft, but the general public believes what they see on television. Why make it hard on ourselves just to prove a point.  We might win the battle, but loose the war. Public opinion weighs heavy on people today.

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