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Issues Filing Flight Plan

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Has anyone else had issues filing a flight plan?

So far, the airport towers that I've tried to communicate with never respond (approve/deny/acknowledge receipt) when I try to file a flight plan. When flying near a hospital, they're much more responsive. I just call security for the helipad and poof, I can generally get approval.


Anyone else have issues with getting responses to flight plan requests?

Any advice?
 

PatR

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You are going to cause yourself a lot of problems if you continue attempting to file flight plans. ATC personnel were instructed by the FAA to not communicate with drone operators to approve airspace use. If you need a flight plan you would also need a CoA or a waiver, which have to be filed with the FAA via their website. Flight plans are not required for drone operations.
 
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You are going to cause yourself a lot of problems if you continue attempting to file flight plans. ATC personnel were instructed by the FAA to not communicate with drone operators to approve airspace use. If you need a flight plan you would also need a CoA or a waiver, which have to be filed with the FAA via their website. Flight plans are not required for drone operations.

First, we don't "file" a flight plan for recreational use. We notify the airport. If there is an air traffic control tower, we notify the tower. We notify, we don't ask for permission. The air traffic controllers have a form they fill out when you call. They will ask for your location using approximate statute distance from the tower and magnetic heading, your name, your address if you don't have a registration number, your real-time phone number in case they need to call you during your flight, the number of aircraft you will be flying, the number of operators, the highest altitude you will fly at, and when you will begin and end operations.

By law we must notify the tower if there is one at the airport.
 
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Learn more about what you are doing before doing any more of it.

And that's why I'm asking the community.

FAA has incomplete information and most drone gurus I've found don't quite answer what I'm looking for.
 

PatR

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In what forum have you ever read of a requirement to file a flight plan for RC aircraft? None exists.

Spend some time learning of the hobby's background before trying to reinvent the wheel. Visit the AMA website and review RC safety standards. Sorry, but for now you don't have a clue about how anything works yet you want to jump right into the National Airspace System to function like a rated pilot.

The FAA maintains extensive information relative to flight activities but you need to expend some effort in research. So does the AMA and AOPA. To get you started I'll refer you to Part 336 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

After that find a local RC flying club and go sit with them awhile. You might even try that first. The visual enlightenment will be helpful.
 
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There are a few.
  • St Cloud Airport (STC)
  • Blaine Airport
  • Crystal Airport
To name a few.

For STC, try calling 320-650-3288 between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. If that doesn't work, call the airport's general number and ask to speak with the manager for the airport. Explain why you're calling (i.e., you are a recreational sUAS pilot calling to establish a notification procedure for flights within five miles of the airport). You may want to email first, to get something in writing. My local airport gave me the manager's email address. I wrote to him and he gave me the phone number for the air traffic controller manager. That manager then gave me the direct line number to the tower's approach controller. Now every time I fly within five miles of the airport I just call that direct number.

If an airport doesn't have a tower, just call whatever number the airport has. If an answering machine comes on, just say why you're calling and give the information I listed above.
 
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For STC, try calling 320-650-3288 between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. If that doesn't work, call the airport's general number and ask to speak with the manager for the airport. ... ...

Thanks. That helps quite a bit.
 

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