Category: avia

Drones and Weapons, A Dangerous Mix

Drones and Weapons, A Dangerous Mix:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is warning the general public that it is illegal to operate a drone with a dangerous weapon attached.

Perhaps youve seen online photos and videos of drones with attached guns, bombs, fireworks, flamethrowers, and other dangerous items. Do not consider attaching any items such as these to a drone because operating a drone with such an item may result in significant harm to a person and to your bank account.

Operating a drone that has a dangerous weapon attached to it is a violation of Section 363 of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act enacted Oct. 5, 2018. Operators are subject to civil penalties up to $25,000 for each violation, unless the operator has received specific authorization from the Administrator of the FAA to conduct the operation. Dangerous Weapon means any item that is used for, or is readily capable of, causing death or serious bodily injury.

Operators should keep in mind that federal regulations and statutes that generally govern drone operations still apply. Some state and federal criminal laws regarding weapons and hazardous materials may also apply to drone operators or manufacturers involved in certain operations.

August 22, 2019 at 11:00PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

FAA Seeks Stakeholder Input on Drone Tests

FAA Seeks Stakeholder Input on Drone Tests:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a Request for Information (RFI) this week seeking to work with stakeholders on the administration of a new aeronautical knowledge test for recreational drone operators.

Section 349 of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 requires new conditions to operate recreational small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). Many drones can be flown today with minimal training or knowledge of aviation rules or safety practices. The new statute is an opportunity to educate recreational flyers on UAS safety and to bring new flyers into the existing aviation safety culture.

The law requires that flyers of recreational drones pass an aeronautical knowledge and safety test. The test will demonstrate a recreational flyers understanding of aeronautical safety knowledge and rules for operating a UAS.

The FAA is developing the test content and the training in consultation with stakeholders. The test must be administered electronically by the FAA, community-based organizations, or other persons designated by the FAA. The FAAs objective is to work with third party entities to allow them to administer the knowledge training and test content on various platforms for the recreational flyer community.

The FAA is looking for entities who want to become testing designees, who will administer the training and testing to the widest audience possible, and who will develop a standard electronic record that will be issued to the potential operator upon completion of the test. The entity will provide the potential drone operator with documentation that they passed the test, which may be requested by the FAA or local law enforcement.

Interested parties should review the RFI and respond by September 12, 2019.

August 15, 2019 at 10:08PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

Stephen M. Dickson Sworn in as Administrator o…

Stephen M. Dickson Sworn in as Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration:

Dickson brings nearly 40 years of aviation experience to the job and becomes the 18th Administrator of the FAA.

August 13, 2019 at 01:14AM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

Fly Safe: Prevent Loss of Control Accidents

Fly Safe: Prevent Loss of Control Accidents:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the general aviation (GA) communitys national #FlySafe campaign helps educate GA pilots about how to avoid loss of control (LOC) accidents.

A LOC accident involves an unintended departure of an aircraft from controlled flight. LOC can happen when the aircraft enters a flight regime that is outside its normal flight envelope and quickly develops into a stall or spin. It can introduce an element of surprise for the pilot.

LOC is the number one root cause of fatalities in GA accidents. More than 25 percent of GA fatalities occur during the maneuvering phase of flight. Of those accidents, half involve stall/spin scenarios.

Stay safe! Thisseries will show you how you can incorporate safety into every flight.

Plenty of Sources

You may think you have more than enough weather information, but having that information available is just part of your decision-making equation.

You need to know how to acquire, interpret and make operational decisions based on that information.

Study and Evaluate

Getting weather information is only the first step. Its important that you study and evaluate the information to understand what it means.

The knowledge tests for most pilot certificates include questions on weather theory and use of weather products in aviation. However, it takes continuous study and experience to develop your skill in evaluating and applying weather data to a specific flight.

You might find it helpful to approach the task of practical, real world weather analysis with several basic concepts in mind.

The three basic elements of weather are:

  • Temperature (warm or cold)
  • Wind (a vector with speed and direction)
  • Moisture (or humidity)

Temperature, wind, and moisture combine to varying degrees to create conditions that affect pilots.

The range of possible combinations is nearly infinite, but weather primarily affects pilots in three ways:

  • visibility
  • turbulence
  • effects on aircraft performance

How Will the Weather Affect You?

One approach to practical weather analysis is to review weather data in terms of how current and forecast conditions will affect visibility, turbulence, and aircraft performance for your specific flight.

Suppose you want to make a flight from Cincinnati Municipal Airport (KLUK) to Ohio State University Airport in Columbus, Ohio (KCMH). You want to depart KLUK around 1830Z and fly VFR at 5,500 MSL. Your estimated time enroute is approximately one hour.

  • Your first step is to look at your weather data in terms of the ways in which weather can affect your flight: turbulence, visibility, and aircraft performance. Organize the information into a format that works for you, and then make the decision. Make an honest evaluation of whether your skill and/or aircraft capability are up to the challenge posed by this particular set of weather conditions.

It is very important to consider whether the combined pilot-aircraft team is sufficient.

  • For example, you may be a very experienced, proficient, and current pilot, but your weather flying ability is still limited if you are flying an older aircraft with no weather avoidance technology.
  • On the other hand, you may have a new aircraft with all the bells and whistles, but if you dont have much weather flying experience, the aircraft cant compensate for your own lack of experience.
  • You must also ensure that you are fully proficient in the use of onboard equipment, and that it is functioning properly.
  • One way to self-check your decision (regardless of your experience) is to ask yourself if the flight has any chance of appearing in the next days newspaper. If the result of the evaluation process leaves you in any doubt, then you need to develop safe alternatives.

Think of the preflight weather plan as a strategic, big picture exercise. The goal is to ensure that you have identified all the weather-related hazards for this particular flight, and planned for ways to eliminate or mitigate each one.

  • Escape Options: Know where you can find good weather within your aircrafts range and endurance capability. Where is it? Which direction do you turn to get there? How long will it take to get there?
  • When the weather is instrument meteorological conditions (ceiling 1,000 feet or less and visibility 3 nm or less), identify an acceptable alternative airport for each 25-30 nm segment of your route.
  • Reserve Fuel: Knowing where to find visual flight rules weather does you no good unless you have enough fuel to reach it. Flight planning for only a legal fuel reserve could significantly limit your options if the weather deteriorates.
  • More fuel means access to more alternatives. Having plenty of fuel also spares you the worry (and distraction) of fearing fuel exhaustion when weather has already increased your cockpit workload.
  • Terrain Avoidance: Know how low you can go without encountering terrain and/or obstacles. Consider a terrain avoidance plan for any flight.

Finally, fly regularly with a certified flight instructor who will challenge you to review what you know, explore new horizons, and to always do your best.

Be sure to document your achievement in the WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program (https://ift.tt/2YPKxZX). Its a great way to stay on top of your game and satisfy your flight review requirements.

More about Loss of Control

Contributing factors may include:

  • Poor judgment or aeronautical decision making
  • Failure to recognize an aerodynamic stall or spin and execute corrective action
  • Intentional failure to comply with regulations
  • Failure to maintain airspeed
  • Failure to follow procedure
  • Pilot inexperience and proficiency
  • Use of prohibited or over-the-counter drugs, illegal drugs, or alcohol

Did you know?

  • From October 2017 through September 2018, 382 people died in 226 general aviation accidents.
  • Loss of Control was the number one cause of these accidents.
  • Loss of Control happens in all phases of flight.It can happen anywhere and at any time.
  • There is one fatal accident involving Loss of Control every four days.

Learn more:

Check out this Pilots Guide for Aviation Weather from the National Weather Service.

This FAA Safety Guide will give you what you need to know about weather briefings and decision-making.

AOPA has a number of helpful weather resources, which you can find here.

Whats coming for the future? Learn about the benefits NextGen is bringing here.

Time is getting short!! The FAAs Equip ADS-B website gives you the information you need to equip now.

Curious about FAA regulations (Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations)? Its a good idea to stay on top of them. You can find current FAA regulations on this website.

TheFAASafety.govwebsite has Notices, FAAST Blasts, online courses, webinars, and more on key general aviation safety topics.

TheWINGS Pilot Proficiency Programhelps pilots build an educational curriculum suitable for their unique flight requirements. It is based on the premise that pilots who maintain currency and proficiency in the basics of flight will enjoy a safer and more stress-free flying experience.

TheGeneral Aviation Joint Steering Committee (GAJSC)is comprised of government and industry experts who work together to use data to identify risk, pinpoint trends through root cause analysis, and develop safety strategies to reduce the risk of GA accidents. The GAJSC combines the expertise of many key decision makers in the FAA, several government agencies such as the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and stakeholder groups. Industry participants include the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Experimental Aircraft Association, General Aviation Manufacturers Association, Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association, National Business Aviation Association, National Air Transportation Association, National Association of Flight Instructors, Society of Aviation and Flight Educators, and the aviation insurance industry. The National Transportation Safety Board and the European Aviation Safety Agency participate as observers.

August 08, 2019 at 08:11PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

Redesigned B4UFLY App Available Now

Redesigned B4UFLY App Available Now:

Today, the FAA in partnership with Kittyhawk relaunched its B4UFLY mobile application that allows recreational drone flyers know where they can and cannot fly in the national airspace system (NAS). The new B4UFLY app is now available to download for free at theApp Storefor iOS andGoogle Play storefor Android.

As we continue our efforts to safely integrate drones into the NAS, working with our industry partners to provide innovative technology is critical, said FAA Acting Administrator Dan Elwell. The B4UFLY app is another tool the FAA can provide recreational drone flyers to help them fly safely and responsibly.

Some of the key features users can expect include:

  • A clear “status” indicator that informs the operator whether it is safe to fly or not. (For example, it shows flying in the Special Flight Rules Area around Washington, D.C. is prohibited.)
  • Informative, interactive maps with filtering options.
  • Information about controlled airspace, special use airspace, critical infrastructure, airports, national parks, military training routes and temporary flight restrictions.
  • A link to LAANC, the FAAs Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability, to obtain authorization to fly in controlled airspace.
  • The ability to check whether it is safe to fly in different locations by searching for a location or moving the location pin.
  • Links to other FAA drone resources and regulatory information.

The app provides situational awareness to recreational flyers and other drone users. It does not allow users to obtain airspace authorizations to fly in controlled airspace, which are only available through LAANC.

For more information, view B4UFLY.

July 31, 2019 at 11:34PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

FAA to Further Expand Opportunities for Safe D…

FAA to Further Expand Opportunities for Safe Drone Operations:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) beginning on July 23 will expand the Low Altitude Authorization and Capability (LAANC) system to include recreational flyers. This action will significantly increase the ability of drone pilots to gain access to controlled airspace nationwide.

LAANC, a collaboration between the FAA and industry that directly supports the safe integration ofUnmanned Aircraft Systems into the nation’s airspace, expedites the time it takes for a drone pilot to receive authorization to fly under 400 feet in controlled airspace.

LAANC provides air traffic professionals with visibility into where and when authorized drones are flying near airports and helps ensure that everyone can safely operate within the airspace. The expansion meansthe FAA has further increased drone pilots access to controlled airspace safely and efficiently.

LAANC capability is accessible to all pilots who operate under theFAAs small drone rule(Part 107).

For updates to LAANC capabilities, visit www.faa.gov/go/laanc.

July 23, 2019 at 05:20PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

The FAA Readies for Tropical Storm Barry

The FAA Readies for Tropical Storm Barry:

Pre and post storm guidance is available for travelers, drone users, and GA pilots.

July 12, 2019 at 10:37PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

Fly Safe: Prevent Loss of Control Accidents

Fly Safe: Prevent Loss of Control Accidents:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the general aviation (GA) communitys national #FlySafe campaign helps educate GA pilots about how to avoid loss of control (LOC) accidents.

A LOC accident involves an unintended departure of an aircraft from controlled flight. LOC can happen when the aircraft enters a flight regime that is outside its normal flight envelope and quickly develops into a stall or spin. It can introduce an element of surprise for the pilot.

LOC is the number one root cause of fatalities in GA accidents. More than 2 percent of GA fatalities occur during the maneuvering phase of flight. Of those accidents, half involve stall/spin scenarios.

Stay safe! This series will show you how you can incorporate safety into every flight.

Stabilized Approach

You may think of stabilized approaches in terms of instrument flying in large airplanes, but theyre equally important to pilots who fly smaller GA airplanes using visual flight rules (VFR). Consider the following to maintain a stable approach:

  • Maintain a constant speed and a constant descent rate that will safely put you in the best position to land with the least amount of work to do when you get there.
  • Memorize your speeds and configuration data so you wont have to check the Pilots Operating Handbook in the midst of a busy landing.
  • If youre not stable at 500 feet, or 1,000 feet when flying using instrument flight rules (IFR) go around. Go-arounds are your best defense against landing accidents.

What is a De-Stabilized Approach?

Excessive speed, excessive altitude, and the necessity for maneuvering can all contribute to a de-stabilized approach.

A stabilized approach is unlikely if you enter the pattern 150 knots or just above stall speed, or 1,000 feet above the pattern altitude. But, what if traffic congestion is forcing you to move faster or higher than your comfort zone?

If following traffic or complying with air traffic control (ATC) instructions will destabilize your flight, its time to exercise your pilot-in-command responsibility. Say the word unable and then establish a new plan.

For mission-oriented pilots, its hard to say unable. But, theres no shame in missing an approach or going around and living to make another flight. If you cant make the approach, just say so.

So when do I go around?

  • If youre at or below 500 feet in VFR conditions and the approach isnt stable, its time to go around.
  • If the runway is out of service, or theres traffic on it, its time to go around.

Whatever the situation, the earlier you make the decision to go around, the easier it will be.

Once youve decided to go around, stick to that decision. Changing your mind after youve started the maneuver is bound to be de-stabilizing, and youre too close to the ground for that.

Handling a Missed Approach

When executing a missed approach or going around, youre already close to the ground, so your first priority is to maintain aircraft control:

  • Arrest your descent, apply power to maintain altitude or climb as appropriate, and configure the airplane for climb or level flight.
  • With the aircraft under control, its time to navigate. For VFR, continue to the runway threshold while climbing to pattern altitude, then maneuver to remain in or reenter the pattern and follow ATC instructions as appropriate. For instrument flight rules (IFR), continue to the missed approach point and then either fly the missed approach procedure or follow ATC instructions.
  • Communicate your intentions, either through a call to ATC, or a call on the common traffic advisory frequency.

Be sure to plan for a go-around on every approach. Know when youll make the decision and execute the go-around at that point.

Dont second guess yourself. This is the time to stand by your decision.

Manage Distractions

An important part of maintaining a stabilized approach on landing is learning to manage distractions especially while maneuvering close to the ground. Consider these tips to help keep you distraction-free:

  • Maintain a sterile cockpit while in departure, approach, and landing flight segments and while maneuvering.
  • Make sure your aircraft is stable before copying ATC instructions, changing charts, reviewing approach, and other tasks.
  • Keep your passenger busy by asking him or her to help you scan for traffic.

Finally, fly regularly with a flight instructor who will challenge you to review what you know, explore new horizons, and to always do your best.

Be sure to document your achievement in the Wings Proficiency Program. Its a great way to stay on top of your game and keep your flight review current.

More about Loss of Control

Contributing factors may include:

Poor judgment or aeronautical decision making

Failure to recognize an aerodynamic stall or spin and execute corrective action

Intentional failure to comply with regulations

Failure to maintain airspeed

Failure to follow procedure

Pilot inexperience and proficiency

Use of prohibited or over-the-counter drugs, illegal drugs, or alcohol

Did you know?

From October 2017 through September 2018, 387 people died in 226 general aviation accidents

Loss of Control was the number one cause of these accidents.

Loss of Control happens in all phases of flight.It can happen anywhere and at any time.

There is one fatal accident involving Loss of Control every four days.

Resources

Aircraft Owners and Pilots Associations (AOPA) Just Say No article about stabilized approaches.

Equip with ADS-B now!

July 10, 2019 at 11:09PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

U.S. Department of Transportation Announces $4…

U.S. Department of Transportation Announces $477M in Infrastructure Grants to 264 Airports in 44 States:

Projects will advance safety, improve travel, generate jobs and provide other economic benefits for local communities.

July 10, 2019 at 12:17AM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji

FAA Establishes Restrictions on Drone Operatio…

FAA Establishes Restrictions on Drone Operations over Additional Military Facilities:

The Federal Aviation Administration announced today new airspace restrictions effective July 11, 2019 on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) attempting to fly over national security sensitive locations.

The FAA has been cooperating with federal partners to address concerns about malicious drone operations by using the agencys existing authority under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations Section 99.7 (14 CFR 99.7), Special Security Instructions, to establish UAS specific flight restrictions over select, national security sensitive locations.

The FAAs Notice to Airmen (NOTAM), FDC 8/3277, defines these special security instructions.The FAA published a NOTAM, FDC 9/3332, which alerts UAS operators and others in the aviation community of this change and points to FDC 8/3277.

The additional 12 restricted locations requested by the U.S. Department of Defense are identified below.

  • Raven Rock Mountain Complex in Adams, PA
  • Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, MO
  • Pine Bluff Arsenal in White Hall, AR
  • Tooele Army Depot in Tooele, UT
  • Hawthorne Army Depot in Hawthorne, NV
  • Pueblo Chemical Depot in Pueblo, CO
  • Iowa Army Ammunition Plant in Middletown, IA
  • Watervliet Arsenal in Watervliet, NY
  • Blue Grass Army Depot in Richmond, KY
  • Letterkenny Army Depot in Chambersburg, PA
  • Rivanna Station in Charlottesville, VA
  • Maui Space Surveillance Site in Maui, HI

UAS operators, in particular, are urged to review the special security instructions prescribed by FDC 8/3277 and the important supporting information provided by the FAAs UAS Data Delivery System (UDDS) website.The UDDS website provides easy access to the text of FDC 8/3277 and other UAS-specific security NOTAMs; a current list of the airspace to which these special security instructions have been applied, supported by an interactive map and downloadable geospatial data; and other crucial details.A link to these restrictions is also included in the FAAs B4UFLY mobile app.

The new UAS flight restrictions highlighted above and by FDC 9/3332 are pending until they become effective on 07/11/2019. UAS operators should keep in mind that access to the airspace identified by FDC 8/3277 and UDDS is strictly controlled.Operators who violate these flight restrictions may be subject to enforcement action, including potential civil penalties and criminal charges.

The FAA is continuing to consider additional requests by eligible Federal security agencies for UAS-specific flight restrictions using the agencys 14 CFR 99.7 authority as they are received. The FAA will announce any future changes, including additional locations, as appropriate.

For further, broader information regarding flying drones in the National Airspace System, including frequently asked questions, please refer to the FAAs UAS website.

July 05, 2019 at 09:26PM Source:FAA.gov News and Updates https://ift.tt/2aTM6Ji