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Being part of a Community Based Organization

DoomMeister

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We all know that part of flying legally under hobbyist/recreational (336) rules is being part of a Community Based Organization (CBO). The AMA is one and has been around for 75 years or so.

There is a newer organization on the scene that is more centered around multirotor aircraft called DroneUp. They are an advertiser for the forum and offer free services for hobbyist and commercial pilots of sUAS craft.

Once you pass their tests and agree to their community rules you can earn a Certificate that verifies you as a member of their CBO.

It appears that they also have programs where you can assist your community once you are part of their program.

I will update this thread once I get a little deeper into their offerings.
 
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DoomMeister

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I’m sure the AMA would like that, but until they cover me insurance-wise away from an AMA airfield I can’t see paying them $75 a year. Photo-ops at an AMA field are very limited.
 

PatR

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DoomMeister,

You may not be aware but the AMA now has an insurance carrier for commercial operators. I requested a quote from this carrier about a month ago and found them to be $100.00/year less expensive for the same coverage I carry with another agency. Someone that operates both commercially and recreationally may like the concept of maintaining AMA membership for $75.00 or less/year for all their recreational stuff while being able to insure their individual commercial aircraft through an associated carrier. As we all know, the commercial carriers levy a charge on each aircraft covered by a policy so if you have two or more commercial rigs you'll find yourself paying $1,000.00 or much more per year for general liability for all of your aircraft.

Don't get me wrong as I am not at all suggesting people run out and join the AMA to obtain liability coverage for their recreational multirotor activities as I don't believe many would ever see a claim paid as it's virtually impossible to meet the safe flying area requirements imposed on them by the AMA for the coverage to apply. Plus their insurance is secondary to any other coverage, such as homeowners, renters, a blanket umbrella policy, the member may already have. Multirotors simply aren't flown like fixed wing and helicopter models with a well laid out runway and spectator area with clear demarcation for separation of the different activities. Someone having their stuff stolen from a locked car could see some relief up to about $1,000.00 of loss value though. As as aside, I was an AMA member for around 30 years but once I started flying multirotors more than fixed wing there wasn't much point in maintaining membership, especially as I was operating commercially long before they came up with their new commercial carrier.

One thing was made pretty clear with the passage of Part 336, the FAA did not specifically name the AMA as "THE" recognized community based organization, which is something I'm certain caused a lot of irritation at the AMA. We can be pretty sure the AMA was hoping for such identification to help entice people to join their organization. Taking all that a step further, the rules state that people should follow the safety guidelines of a national recognized community based organization. They don't say people have to be members of one;) There's another one out there named "Don't Be Stupid". It was started almost two years ago at another forum. No dues, membership cards, or newsletters. When you think about it, the name says it all and there's really not much more that needs to be said. If people simply learned what the published rules are and operated within them there would be very few problems.
 
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Fellow Pilots,
We would love to contribute our knowledge to this topic.

Per the FAA, Non-Part 107 recreational sUAS operators must “Follow community-based safety guidelines and fly within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization.” In accordance with that guidance and the anticipated requirements of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Bill, DroneUp, in affiliation with our partner, IACDP, have launched the Responsible Community Pilot (RCP) program to offer recreational pilots an engaging and effective option.

The RCP program exceeds the requirements outlined in the FAA guidelines. In addition to providing a community based set of guidelines and defined programming, it engages drone pilots through training, certification, idea-sharing, and community. It provides the means and connections with the community to help non-commercial pilots operate in the national airspace.

Furthermore, we offer:
  • Continually updated online courses and exams that improve regulation awareness

  • Mission-driven experiential exercises that improve piloting skills

  • An online community for questions and discussion

  • Mobile apps that verify where it is safe to fly and active advisories nearby

  • Comprehensive Standards of Conduct

  • Detailed Safety Guidelines

  • Advocacy on behalf of the community

When a formal process for CBO recognition is available, we are excited to apply. We are routinely updating the FAA regarding our activities. This team effort will continue to support better trained and responsible pilots which is critical to the long-term success of the unmanned industry.
 

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