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Old Dec 05, 2012, 04:07 AM
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The Supreme Court has already ruled on this.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Causby
Quote:
The court's decision, authored by Justice William O. Douglas, could have resolved the case on a narrow ground by simply holding that there was a taking of land because the government's flights affected the land. Justice Douglas did reach that conclusion, but then he went much further and opined on what airspace landowners do and do not own. He wrote that "if the landowner is to have full enjoyment of the land, he must have exclusive control of the immediate reaches of the enveloping atmosphere. Otherwise buildings could not be erected, trees could not be planted, and even fences could not be run" . . . Thus, a landowner "owns at least as much of the space above the ground as he can occupy or use in connection with the land," and invasions of that airspace "are in the same category as invasions of the surface."[1]
If you have premission from the land owner you can fly above his land up to a reasonable altitude. Anything under 400 feet is reasonable according to the FAA.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 05:58 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
Mesa, Arizona
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarro View Post
The Supreme Court has already ruled on this.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Causby

If you have premission from the land owner you can fly above his land up to a reasonable altitude. Anything under 400 feet is reasonable according to the FAA.
Tarro I read the decision to say that the landowner can legally add things to the property that extend upward from the ground such as antenna's, windmill, silo's, etc and that he will have full property rights of those additions just as he would for his house.
I quite don't see how that would extend to allowing someone to fly 400ft over the property other than of course wanting it to mean that.


Holding (From the case)
Cujus est solum ejus est usque ad coelum et ad inferos has no legal authority in the United States when pertaining to the sky. A man does not have control and ownership over the airspace of their property except within reasonable limits to utilize their property. Airspace above a set minimum height is property of the Masses and no one man can accuse airplanes or other such craft within of trespassing on what they own.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Gary Evans View Post
Tarro I read the decision to say that the landowner can legally add things to the property that extend upward from the ground such as antenna's, windmill, silo's, etc and that he will have full property rights of those additions just as he would for his house.
I quite don't see how that would extend to allowing someone to fly 400ft over the property other than of course wanting it to mean that. .
Not to sound rude but who cares what you "see" or don't see in this regard?
Why do you and that Mortimer guy jump in and whine about how it is illegal? You care more then the FAA. Why do you constantly bring this dead horse up?
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Tarro View Post
...If you have premission from the land owner you can fly above his land up to a reasonable altitude. Anything under 400 feet is reasonable according to the FAA.
This is incorrect.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 09:49 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
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Originally Posted by Tarro View Post
Not to sound rude but who cares what you "see" or don't see in this regard?
Why do you and that Mortimer guy jump in and whine about how it is illegal? You care more then the FAA. Why do you constantly bring this dead horse up?
This isn't my thread and I hardly think that discussing a court ruling that you brought up is whining. I thought I was very polite in my comments.

The last time I checked we were still friends but that goes back to the time you were collecting money to support one of your projects. Guess I'm mixing you up with someone else. Sorry my mistake!
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Eddie James View Post
This is incorrect.
Who could argue with that?
Later.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 10:09 AM
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Is it just me, or does anyone find it odd that the FAA seems very willing to send out letters and call people up "advising" them that operating a commercial UAS is illegal, but they never seem to back that up with an actual enforcement action. In this case they wouldn't even directly order your to cease and desist. To me this seems like despite having a clear FAA "policy" on this, they would not have a very strong legal case to actually enforce a penalty for this.

In my research, the most difficult thing about the whole FAA situation is understanding what legal effect various FAA documents actually have. According to this page: http://www.suasnews.com/2012/03/1339...rspace-system/

Quote:
Title 49 of the USC relates to Transportation. Subtitle VII relates to “Aviation Programs” and Part A of Subtitle VII relates to “Commerce and Safety.” It is in this section wherein the FAA obtains its authority to regulate the NAS.

49 USC §40103(b) states that “The Administrator shall prescribe air traffic regulations regarding the flight of aircraft for:

(A) Navigating, protecting, and identifying aircraft;

(B) Protecting individuals and property on the ground;

(C) Using the navigable airspace efficiently; and

(D) Preventing collision between aircraft, between aircraft and land or water vehicles, and between aircraft and airborne objects.”

The important words in §40103(b) are “by regulation or order.” It is the FAA’s regulations and orders that govern the operation of aircraft in the airspace controlled by the FAA, not policies or guidance. Therefore, any analysis of whether an operation is permitted within the NAS should focus on the regulations and orders of the FAA. FAA policies, guidance’s, notices and advisories are simply documents used to provide guidance on how one might comply with regulations or orders. They are not law and are therefore not a foundation of legal enforcement. As one FAA attorney described, “Policies explain how the FAA may handle or interpret certain matters.”
So just because the FAA has a policy which you are disobeying may not give them actual legal authority to prosecute you for violating it. You can only actually be prosecuted in an enforcement action for violating a FAR. Now the FAA may very well be right that in this case the absence of a regulation permitting you to fly equals a prohibition, but not necessarily. In general laws work the reverse way--anything not prohibited is permitted.

So this is all a pretty muddy situation. I know there are a lot of people still doing commercial aerial photography operations with RC aircraft, and while the FAA has issued cease and desist letters to a few, others seem to be able to keep operating without being harassed by the FAA. There's one guy in Colorado that's been doing this for years and I've wondered how he's able to get away with it. Maybe I'm right and the FAA is so doubtful of their own legal case here they won't chance actually taking it to court. Or maybe not. In the end, who really knows with all this stuff? Aviation law is the most complicated area of law I've ever seen--even more complicated that copyright law in some respects. Good luck figuring it out!
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 10:19 AM
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"To me this seems like despite having a clear FAA "policy" on this, they would not have a very strong legal case to actually enforce a penalty for this."

THIS.

They would rather just be able to scare you into compliance, because they aren't 100% sure they would win in court.

Big bad FAA vs some guy with his toy airplane taking pictures from 10ft off the ground may not go well for them and they know it.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 10:42 AM
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good point
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 10:45 AM
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I don't think they want to pursue this issue right now beyond issuing warning unless forced to so because of the current confused and delayed state of sUAV and amateur model regs.
When everything is finalized and published if that ever happens I expect enforcement of some type will follow. It would be difficult now to enforce regs that don’t yet exist using penalties that haven’t been decided upon.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by BushmanLA View Post
They would rather just be able to scare you into compliance, because they aren't 100% sure they would win in court.
Or the opposite where the KNEW they were going to go say something in a forum. Then he comes here and does a bit of self incrimination by posting that he was warned but will not comply. At least with message boards it's difficult to prove you were the original poster.

To me this seems a lot like the local police department trolling Youtube looking for offenders. Then ticketing or arresting those offenders due to video proof of them performing the event. That or how the state of NY was using Google Earth to issue violations to people that 'illegally' installed swimming pools in their yard.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BushmanLA View Post
Big bad FAA vs some guy with his toy airplane taking pictures from 10ft off the ground may not go well for them and they know it.
They also know that their rules have zero logic behind them and there is nothing to back them up with.
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 12:04 PM
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Eddie - Thanks for all the good info. That does clear up a lot on what the FAA considers a UAS, and their views on commercial activities.

I wholly do not agree with the FAA on this matter and hopefully we can get together and help them see that what we are doing should not be under their jurisdiction.

Sounds like the petition process is a complete dead end and I will not even attempt to go that route.

JDWPHOTOS - The number was from a local area code, so I was not suspicious enough not to answer it.. Turned out to be the local office.

I am just going to ignore the FAA on this one and continue on as if I never received the phone call. I would love to see them actually indict me for this.. If they can even find a law that I am actually breaking.

I will involve so much media that hopefully it will educate a lot of people that there is a difference between an rc plane with a camera strapped to it and an actual so called "UAS".

If you google aerial photographers in my city and surrounding areas, my website is first on google. I am beating out several photogs that use full scale aircraft, and I am sure this is not making them happy. Customers comment all the time how no one else they get estimates from can even compete with my prices.

I have received a few estimates in the last couple weeks that seemed to be someone just wanting information, like a name that seems fictitious, or doesn't match the address, and also I never hear back from them.

So I can guess that my competition ratted me out or the FAA guy here is just actively seeking out rebel law breaking treasonous terrorists such as my self
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 12:18 PM
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If the FAA saw a photo of the HK EPP FPV they would stop bothering you.

The graphics on it make it look anything but threatening or dangerous, unless you painted it a dull gray like I did. (oooOO so scary )
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Old Dec 05, 2012, 01:07 PM
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Honestly I think the op is on the right track. The federal government can't even enforce the laws they have now. Let them make rules and play at control. They are on the verge of insolvency. Many Mexican people ignore federal laws when they come to America "illegally", but our legislature is now saying that's ok. So the question is, why shouldn't Americans follow suit? The government is supposed to be of the people. Well here we have a government which is dictating to us, and not allowing logical discourse and rebuttal, and even admitting the same! That is overreaching and unsustainable. It is also represhensible.
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