SMALL - espritmodel.com SMALL - Telemetry SMALL - Radio
Reply
Thread Tools
Old Oct 09, 2009, 04:11 AM
Registered User
Anchorage, AK
Joined Dec 2002
280 Posts
Discussion
Dangerous close call

I was reading something earlier that jogged my memory of an incident that happened to me this past summer. I'm a flight engineer on the E-3 AWACS in the Air Force. I'm thinking it was around June sometime, we were flying into Tinker AFB in Oklahoma City. Off the south end of the base, about 6 or 7 miles away, is an RC airplane club. Anyways, we were doing an ILS approach to runway 35 there and were about 1,200 feet above the ground. As we were passing near the RC field, one of the pilots grabbed the yoke, banked the plane to the left while saying "what the hell is that?" I looked out and saw what looked to be a Telemaster less than 100 feet away. The RC pilot flying it, must have been a complete imbecile. I only knew there was an RC club there, because I used to live in OKC. I E-mailed the club officers for that club, but never heard back from any of them. There's no real point to this post. I just felt like telling somebody. Don't let people at your club do a dumb stunt like that. If they do, hit them like Terry Tate. I'd imagine that the Air Force would not be happy if they lost a $400 million airplane and 30 people due to a guy with an RC plane. It wouldn't be good for the club.
KC10Chief is offline Find More Posts by KC10Chief
Reply With Quote
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Old Oct 09, 2009, 06:50 AM
Registered User
New Jersey, USA
Joined May 2003
1,990 Posts
I think there's a very valid point to your post. An R/C model only 100" feet away??? Even 500' away would be irresponsible. There seems to be ONE imbecile in any group and that one person can make life difficult for the rest. If I were that club's president I would encourage you, or a representative of that AFB to pay the club a visit. Rather than an OFFICIAL visit, due to necessity, a friendly visit to impress and convey the seriousness of an irresponsible pilot's flight into full scale airspace.

There's no such thing as an accident.
David A Ramsey is offline Find More Posts by David A Ramsey
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 07:48 AM
Suspended Account
USA, FL, Apopka
Joined Dec 2000
4,072 Posts
The AMA has decided to interpret the FAA regulations (AC 91-57) to be that the 400 foot limit for model aircraft only applies when within 3 miles of an airport. Given the relative speeds of a Telemaster and a E-3 AWACS he may have been trying to get out of the way but was just too slow.

The incident shows the fallacy of the AMA interpretation. AC 91-57 which actually only recommends, actually says 400 feet above the surface, and to notify the airport if within 3 miles of it.

http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgAdvisoryCircular.nsf/0/1acfc3f689769a56862569e70077c9cc/$FILE/ATTBJMAC/ac91-57.pdf
bradpaul is offline Find More Posts by bradpaul
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Old Oct 09, 2009, 07:57 AM
Registered User
mongo's Avatar
midland, REPUBLIC of TEXAS
Joined Mar 2002
454 Posts
it would kinda appear to me, that, even with the period after the 400 ft part of the recommendation, that there needs to be a look at the distance from an active airport part with an eye to extending that to maybe 6-7 miles radius.
mongo is offline Find More Posts by mongo
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 10:38 AM
Registered User
USA, CA, Santee
Joined Jul 2002
304 Posts
Not to minimize the danger presented by having RC Aircraft in the same airspace as full scale, and not to diminish the idiocy of any RC pilot that irresponsible near full scale aircraft, but having flown military aircraft since I was 17 years old and having hit several things in my 24 years of flying, I seriously doubt you would have "lost a $400 M aircraft and 30 people" from hitting a Telemaster even if you'd taken it in the windshield or engine, that's exactly why we practice EP's. Let's present the danger, but be realistic at the same time and not resort to scare tactics.

Jerry N
S3NFO is offline Find More Posts by S3NFO
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 10:59 AM
Suspended Account
USA, FL, Apopka
Joined Dec 2000
4,072 Posts
Couple of questions for the full scale hopefully military pilots:

Is 1200 foot altitude normal at 6 to 7 miles out?
What speed would a E-3 be at,over 200 mph?

Why would there be a RC Club in the normal approach pattern to Timker AFB runway 35?

THe AMA says there is not a 400 foot limit when more then 3 miles from an airport and since the Telemaster cruses at say 25 mph did he even have time to get out of the way?

Not in any way to say excuse the fact that the RC pilot must always yield to full size,but this sound like a problem in where the club is located.
bradpaul is offline Find More Posts by bradpaul
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Old Oct 09, 2009, 11:26 AM
RB #2
The Toolman's Avatar
Lake of The Ozarks
Joined Jul 2006
314 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by S3NFO
Not to minimize the danger presented by having RC Aircraft in the same airspace as full scale, and not to diminish the idiocy of any RC pilot that irresponsible near full scale aircraft, but having flown military aircraft since I was 17 years old and having hit several things in my 24 years of flying, I seriously doubt you would have "lost a $400 M aircraft and 30 people" from hitting a Telemaster even if you'd taken it in the windshield or engine, that's exactly why we practice EP's. Let's present the danger, but be realistic at the same time and not resort to scare tactics.

Jerry N

You don't think a chunk of metal (engine) the size of your fist or bigger wouldn't do anything to the turbine blades in the engine?

When ya have some spare $ sometime, stand off to the side of a running jet engine an casually toss a os.46 into it an see what happens.
The Toolman is offline Find More Posts by The Toolman
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 11:34 AM
DreamArcher's Avatar
Joined Apr 2008
1,979 Posts
^^^ That's not what he said.


Yeah really. An RC plane takes out a military aircraft. If you think they're that weak I'd reconsider even getting in one. You know they're made for this lame thing called a war where missiles and other baddie things are shot at them.

On the 1200'. That had to be the cruising altitude before the approach.

I just check the Oakland airport approach (Google Earth) and there is a private airport directly under the approach path at 5 miles. Not an RC club but the Hayward airport. For certain small planes are flying in the pattern up to 800 feet around the Hayward airport.
DreamArcher is offline Find More Posts by DreamArcher
Last edited by DreamArcher; Oct 09, 2009 at 11:39 AM.
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 11:46 AM
RB #2
The Toolman's Avatar
Lake of The Ozarks
Joined Jul 2006
314 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by KC10Chief
I was reading something earlier that jogged my memory of an incident that happened to me this past summer. I'm a flight engineer on the E-3 AWACS in the Air Force. I'm thinking it was around June sometime, we were flying into Tinker AFB in Oklahoma City. Off the south end of the base, about 6 or 7 miles away, is an RC airplane club. Anyways, we were doing an ILS approach to runway 35 there and were about 1,200 feet above the ground. As we were passing near the RC field, one of the pilots grabbed the yoke, banked the plane to the left while saying "what the hell is that?" I looked out and saw what looked to be a Telemaster less than 100 feet away. The RC pilot flying it, must have been a complete imbecile. I only knew there was an RC club there, because I used to live in OKC. I E-mailed the club officers for that club, but never heard back from any of them. There's no real point to this post. I just felt like telling somebody. Don't let people at your club do a dumb stunt like that. If they do, hit them like Terry Tate. I'd imagine that the Air Force would not be happy if they lost a $400 million airplane and 30 people due to a guy with an RC plane. It wouldn't be good for the club.

Seems like everybody that posts here that isn't one of the regular good ol' boys, is considered a liar when they post something such as your post here.

But thats alright, I know what a chunk of metal the size of a rc engine will do to a jet engine.
The Toolman is offline Find More Posts by The Toolman
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 12:05 PM
Suspended Account
USA, FL, Apopka
Joined Dec 2000
4,072 Posts
Where the heck did you read something that implied that? Looking for something to complain about?
bradpaul is offline Find More Posts by bradpaul
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Old Oct 09, 2009, 12:20 PM
Registered User
Joined Sep 2001
1,664 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by KC10Chief
I was reading something earlier that jogged my memory of an incident that happened to me this past summer.
WOW!!! Your post made me remember something too. And you have convinced me that Telemasters should be banned...LOL

Anyway, back in the early eighties one of the guys I regularly flew with had a Telemaster also. One day, despite many admonitions against such, he was flying his Telemaster at a very high altitude. Well, along comes a commercial airliner ascending from a local airport. Even though the planes were not even close to a collision the Full Scale pilot made a hard evasive turn as he probably thought the model was a full scale of some sort. Well... guess what? The next day the flying site was permanently closed to RC. We lost one of the best flying sites ever due to the incident... Never figured out what was to be proved by flying so high…low, slow and in control is much more impressive IMO.
littlecrankshaft is offline Find More Posts by littlecrankshaft
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 12:21 PM
Registered User
New Jersey, USA
Joined May 2003
1,990 Posts
The point here is that no model aircraft should disrupt the flight of a full scale aircraft!
David A Ramsey is offline Find More Posts by David A Ramsey
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 12:47 PM
DreamArcher's Avatar
Joined Apr 2008
1,979 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Toolman
Seems like everybody that posts here that isn't one of the regular good ol' boys, is considered a liar when they post something such as your post here.

But thats alright, I know what a chunk of metal the size of a rc engine will do to a jet engine.
He said it can't take down the aircraft. He didn't say it couldn't stop one of the engines. His words are right there if you'd like to check.
DreamArcher is offline Find More Posts by DreamArcher
Reply With Quote
Old Oct 09, 2009, 01:18 PM
Suspended Account
USA, FL, Apopka
Joined Dec 2000
4,072 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by David A Ramsey
The point here is that no model aircraft should disrupt the flight of a full scale aircraft!
I think everybody is in agreement on that point.

The question I would like an answer to is if the RC club is in the flight path to runway 35 at Tinker AFB, and if planes are at 1200 foot on approach, why would anybody fly higher then 400 foot, even though the AMA says it is OK as long as you are more then 3 miles from ann airport.

Is 1200 foot 6 miles from the air base normal or an exception?

The RC pilot is still absolutely required to not disrupt a full size flight, but I would like to know if he was an idiot or just caught unaware while following AMA guidelines.
bradpaul is offline Find More Posts by bradpaul
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Old Oct 09, 2009, 01:32 PM
Suspended Account
Joined Mar 2008
2,937 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjpaul

The RC pilot is still absolutely required to not disrupt a full size flight, but I would like to know if he was an idiot or just caught unaware while following AMA guidelines.
This is the most usefull post of this thread ! It asks the MOST important question : WHY did this close encounter happen ? If you dont know the "why" then how can you prevent it from happening again ?
init4fun is offline Find More Posts by init4fun
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Reply


Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bandit close call....! kenny_dilger Electric Sailplanes 4 Jun 02, 2002 06:58 PM
Cool Plane crash close call and Texans... Don Sims Humor 0 May 27, 2002 07:25 PM
close call with my switchback Tim K Parkflyers 12 Apr 18, 2002 04:48 PM
Fly-by-video Close-call of a PusEcat and a Cow-on-handglider jas_Qfix Electric Plane Talk 3 Jun 24, 2001 11:54 PM
Close call of PusiEcat and Cow-on HandGlider .. fly-by video jas_Qfix Parkflyers 0 Jun 24, 2001 01:59 PM