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  1. BobW55

    BobW55 Moderator
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    I had a nice chat with our local Fire Chief last night, and he would like to try using my H when they conduct field burn offs. I explained to him that until I pass my Part 107 test I could not legally do this. But I would be most willing to help out.
    So I called the local FAA office in Detroit.(most of them are clueless to the new regulations). I asked if I would need any additional certifications or waivers other than part 107 certificate. I was greeted with Duh, Hm, your need to call this place, or maybe that place. The new 107 regulations leave a few things out.
    The fire chief is checking with the local and county offices to see about insurance coverage.
    My question for the FAA that I can not get a "Show me in black and white" answer for is:
    "What exemption would I need for an increase in altitude (COA)?" Or would I need any since I am doing this at the direction of local and county rescue authorities. And further would such an exemption need to be reapplied for if the location changes.
    If you read Part 107, it would appear that for now, that is all you need, but you still have the 400' limitation.
    But if you also read some of the FAA pages, they do talk about exemptions(COA) for various activities. The 333 exemptions are going away.

    If you have a phone number for the FAA, for an office that is well versed in the new regulations, please post it.
    I want to do this right, so I need black and white answers. So far the FAA is providing more of "I THINK" answers.
    I never thought something so seemingly simple would require an aviation lawyer.

    PS: I want more altitude for those rare times when the whole field goes. The fireball is one thing, the heat bloom is another. But I would tend to keep my activities near the perimeter.

    For those who don't have it, here is PART 107, all 624 pages of it.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/media/RIN_2120-AJ60_Clean_Signed.pdf
     
    #1 BobW55, Sep 6, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2016
  2. PatR

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    Under FAR 91.3 the pilot is solely responsible for the outcome of the flight and may deviate from regulations as necessary to assure the safe outcome of that flight. Notification of any deviations are not required until and unless ATC and/or the FAA asks for them.

    An aviation attorney would be far better qualified to make an assessment with this but the way I'm looking at it if you are flying under Part 107 at the request of and for a fire department (who might have a localized blanket CoA for aerial fire fighting when necessary) you would be exercising your responsibilities as pilot/remote operator in command in assuring a safe flight if deviating from an altitude restriction should it be necessary. Of course separation from and not interfering with manned aircraft operations still lies with you. You would certainly not want to be put in a position to be considered a threat to aerial navigation. I would hope you would have some type of documentation from the FD authorizing your flights in their support to save your bacon should someone report you in a complaint. Date specific would be nice to have.
     
    abinder likes this.
  3. Mike_Flys

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    Under part 107 you can request a waiver to fly at a higher altitude.

    Part 91 covers manned aircraft.
    Part107 covers commercial drone flight.
    However Part 107 does allow for deviation of the regulations to assure a safe out come. However this regulation is for something not planned... emergency.
    Since you are planning to fly above 400ft it is not an emergency.

    It is pretty straight forward under part 107 to request flying at a higher altitude.
    Just apply for the waiver here:
    Request a Waiver/Airspace Authorization – Small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS)

    As for the black and white of it here are links to Part 107 regulations.
    All of Part 107 regulations can be found here:
    eCFR — Code of Federal Regulations

    Deviating from the regulations for safety:
    107.21 In-flight emergency.
    (a) In an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action, the remote pilot in command may deviate from any rule of this part to the extent necessary to meet that emergency.

    (b) Each remote pilot in command who deviates from a rule under paragraph (a) of this section must, upon request of the Administrator, send a written report of that deviation to the Administrator.

    Below is the list of regulation you can apply for a waiver from.
    From my understanding to waiver the 400 ft you would request a waiver from Section 107.51—Operating limitations for small unmanned aircraft.


    107.205 List of regulations subject to waiver.
    A certificate of waiver issued pursuant to §107.200 may authorize a deviation from the following regulations of this part:

    (a) Section 107.25—Operation from a moving vehicle or aircraft. However, no waiver of this provision will be issued to allow the carriage of property of another by aircraft for compensation or hire.

    (b) Section 107.29—Daylight operation.

    (c) Section 107.31—Visual line of sight aircraft operation. However, no waiver of this provision will be issued to allow the carriage of property of another by aircraft for compensation or hire.

    (d) Section 107.33—Visual observer.

    (e) Section 107.35—Operation of multiple small unmanned aircraft systems.

    (f) Section 107.37(a)—Yielding the right of way.

    (g) Section 107.39—Operation over people.

    (h) Section 107.41—Operation in certain airspace.

    (i) Section 107.51—Operating limitations for small unmanned aircraft.

     
  4. BobW55

    BobW55 Moderator
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    I am well familiar with the requirements. I hold a private pilot license.
    I am more worried about altitude restrictions. For what the fire chief is wanting 400 feet is more than enough.
    I have asked him to see if anyone has done a thermal study of air temp/alt above a field fire. We are NOT talking a forest fire like they have out west. You could not pay me enough to fly near those authorized or not.
    I may have to just stipulate that this would be perimeter observations only.
    I sent the FAA an email asking for better clarification.
     
    Mike_Flys likes this.
  5. Mike_Flys

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    Cool. UAShelp@faa.gov is a great resource.
    Let us know how what they say.

    Lots of pilots on this forum. I have Single Engine Sea and Single Engine Land ratings on my pilots certificate.
    I love flying boats the best!
     
  6. Rayray

    Rayray Moderator
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    Very interesting, Bob. As I anticipated when I first saw your post, you're getting quite a bit of varied answers.
    Insurance: obviously important. If you get a Remote Pilot certificate via 107, you will probably want to get your own liability insurance. A new area, but hopefully it will not be prohibitive in cost. Not familiar with your "field burn-offs" but I doubt you would ever need to exceed 400'. Pics at that height won't show any detail at all, will they?

    As a hobby op, right now, with the landowner's permission, you could try filming one as an exercise.

    If you gave that video away, you are not commercial. My 2 centavos, and worth less than that, lol.
     
    Mike_Flys likes this.
  7. BobW55

    BobW55 Moderator
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    Field burn off= several acres, a fire fighter or more on each side. A bit of excellarent,
    Drop match and whoomp.
    They try to burn towards the middle. But from the ground can be hard to tell if it is burning straight and even. The flash over when it hits the middle is fun to watch, but dangerous if it happens near a field end.
     
    Mike_Flys likes this.