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New Legislation And Trainee Requirements

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Cuban823/10/2019 12:46:11
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Posted by Steve J on 23/10/2019 11:23:58:
Posted by Cuban8 on 23/10/2019 10:14:10:

I'm inclined to think that anyone having a 'taster session' would be treated in the same way as someone having one of those trial lessons that full size flying clubs offer ...

Unfortunately it doesn't matter what you are inclined to think. What matters is what is says in the ANO and any permissions/exceptions/authorisations that the CAA give the associations.

Have you read articles 94D, F & G?

Steve

Perhaps they need to go back and reread their text and consider why, to the best of my knowledge, a person is perfectly legally entitled to take the controls of a full size light aircraft whilst unqualified/untrained but under the supervison of an instructor without sitting an exam or whatever (even a Spitfire if you've got the dosh) yet not when flying a model under supervision, if that is what the ANO is saying. Is that the case?

Steve J23/10/2019 12:47:24
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New BMFA article published.

"The BMFA does not disagree that awareness of applicable regulations is an essential requirement for safe operation and during our campaign it has become evident to all parties (including the CAA) that there are, perhaps, a few too many model flyers who do not fully understand the existing regulations."

Edited By Steve J on 23/10/2019 12:49:55

Ray Dunn23/10/2019 12:51:52
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Whilst not the best we could wish for, I'm impressed with what the BMFA (and others) have managed to achieve. Real progress at last, with someone prepared to listen!

Hopefully these gains in central and reduced fee and three year competency test will hold.

Peter Miller23/10/2019 13:46:17
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I think that is really good and far better than most (including myself) could have expected

Gary Manuel23/10/2019 13:59:52
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BMFA members have just been sent the following email, which provides some new info not seen before. Presumably other associations will have similar arrangements:

 

Further to the announcement earlier this week, we will be working with the CAA to clarify the detail of how we can best assist our members to comply with the Registration and Competency requirements which were introduced in the 2018 changes to the Air Navigation Order and become law on the 30th November 2019 for those operating unmanned aircraft.

The changes to the law are in part to address established issues arising from unlawful operation, but also to help facilitate the wider integration of unmanned aircraft into the airspace in the future. The Queen’s Speech of 14th October announced the ‘Air Traffic Management and Unmanned Aircraft Bill’ which introduces mechanisms for modernising airspace and Air Traffic Services and provides the Police with new powers to deal with the unlawful use of unmanned aircraft.

It is acknowledged that Operator Registration is unlikely to address unlawful operation and that those using an unmanned aircraft for malicious purposes are unlikely to register. However, it does provide the Police with a mechanism for enforcement if they challenge anyone they suspect of operating an unmanned aircraft illegally. If the operator is not registered or able to confirm competency, then the Police have an immediate and clear reason for issuing a fixed penalty notice or prosecution. Details of the punitive measures have yet to be published.

Similarly, it is acknowledged that Competency requirements will not address the issue of those using unmanned aircraft with malicious intent. However, there is a hope that it may help reduce the significant number of unlawful operations conducted unwittingly. The BMFA does not disagree that awareness of applicable regulations is an essential requirement for safe operation and during our campaign it has become evident to all parties (including the CAA) that there are, perhaps, a few too many model flyers who do not fully understand the existing regulations.

The measures announced earlier this week are interim ones to deal with the immediate issue of the changes to UK law which become applicable on the 30th November. We will be working with the CAA towards the implementation of the EU regulations in June 2020, so actively encouraging members to break the law by not complying (as some have suggested) would be counterproductive and detrimental to our ongoing negotiations.

Continued in next post.......

Edited By Gary Manuel on 23/10/2019 14:05:27

Gary Manuel23/10/2019 14:02:19
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What does this mean for BMFA members?

In simple terms, if you operate an unmanned aircraft weighing more than 250g outdoors after the 30th November then it will become a legal requirement to be registered as an Operator with the CAA and be able to provide evidence that you are competent (essentially to confirm that you are aware of the applicable laws). Those who only operate control line aircraft will be exempted from the requirements.

The CAA have agreed to recognise our members’ Achievements as an alternative to their online test and allow us to administer registration of Operators as part of our membership process. A few key points to note are that:

  1. The fee for Operator registration will be £9/year. Where members choose to register through the BMFA, we will collect the fee and pass it on to the CAA. The BMFA does not profit from this in any way. The CAA has to make a charge to users in order to cover the cost of the scheme which is not subsidised by the Government (unlike in some other countries).
  2. Members will be exempted from registering as Operators on the 30th November and can register instead as part of the BMFA’s membership renewal process (ideally by the end of January 2020).
  3. Registering as an Operator through the BMFA will be a specific ‘opt-in’ for members and the CAA will only receive information for those members who have given consent by ‘opting in’ and paid the CAA fee.
  4. The BMFA has never and will never share members’ data with any third parties without consent.
  5. We are still clarifying arrangements for junior members in terms of Operator registration, but there are no age restrictions for ‘Remote Pilots’.
  6. Members who ‘opt in’ will receive an email from the CAA with their ‘Flyer ID’ once their data is uploaded. (Should a member be asked to provide proof of registration before receiving their Flyer ID the BMFA office will provide evidence of compliance.)
  7. There will be no requirement to place any registration numbers on the exterior of model aircraft, but they must be carried in an easily accessible location (within a battery hatch for example).
  8. For members with an existing Achievement, all that they will need to do to remain lawful will be to simply ‘opt in’ when they renew their membership and pay the additional CAA fee.
  9. We will shortly introduce a Member’s Competency Certificate (a simple knowledge test which will be available online/hardcopy and/or via our clubs and examiners) as an alternative to the CAA system for those without an existing Achievement. Members without an existing Achievement will either have to complete a Member’s Competency Certificate or the CAA’s own test before we can register them as an Operator.
  10. Registration and/or evidence of competency will not be conditions of BMFA membership but failure to be able to produce evidence of both if challenged by the Police could result in a fixed penalty notice or prosecution.
  11. Compliance with the Registration/Competency requirements is largely a matter for individual members and as such we would not expect Clubs to automatically assume responsibility for policing it, though of course some may choose to do so (perhaps to assist those members wishing to comply who do not have access to the internet or in order to comply with local operating requirements such as FRZ permissions for example).
  12. We are still working with insurers to resolve any potential insurance implications and hope to be able to clarify the situation by the end of this week.
  13. Members will continue to benefit from the existing permissions/exemptions already granted to the CAA recognised UK Associations (such as the permission to operate above 400ft with aircraft of less than 7Kg, operate control line aircraft within an FRZ and operate FPV aircraft with a competent observer).

We appreciate that there are still likely to be many questions arising from this, but there remains a lot of detail to resolve with the CAA (and our insurers) before we can issue definitive guidance. However, please be assured that we will provide further information and guidance as soon as it becomes available.

Kind Regards

David Phipps, CEO.

MattyB23/10/2019 14:09:35
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Posted by Steve J on 23/10/2019 11:23:58:
Posted by Cuban8 on 23/10/2019 10:14:10:

I'm inclined to think that anyone having a 'taster session' would be treated in the same way as someone having one of those trial lessons that full size flying clubs offer ...

Unfortunately it doesn't matter what you are inclined to think. What matters is what is says in the ANO and any permissions/exceptions/authorisations that the CAA give the associations.

Have you read articles 94D, F & G?

Steve

Steve, your knowledge of the text is probably better than anyone else here, but I think we still need to remain pragmatic...

I accept if you do a line by line review of the ANO there is no clear statement about the categorisation of the trainee on a buddy system. That would imply that legally the trainee must take one of the defined roles, most likely the remote pilot, and therefore would have to take the test. However, if an incident where a contravention of the law was proved to have occurred, who are they actually going to go after in court? The instructor (at minimum a remote pilot and in 99% of cases the operator too) who has formally demonstrating their understanding of the law and can take control of the aircraft at any point? Or the trainee who has turned up, has no previous experience/knowledge of the requirements and wants to experience flying for the first time?

IMO it is far easier and more likely they will prosecute the instructor as if they were a solo pilot being prosecuted for the same misdemeanour - they understood and accepted the legal responsibility, they were in primary control of the aircraft and still the contravention occurred. It's far harder to prove the trainee was responsible - unless you have Tx logging who do we know was in control when the transgression occurred?

Putting all that aside, ultimately it will be the decision of the instructors as to whether they take the advice of the BMFA or decide they will only instruct those who have done the competency test. Personally I think the risk is so miniscule I will continue to instruct on a buddy system; I am quite comfortable in that situation it is me who is 100% responsible for the safety of the flight, and if a transgression occurred that would be my fault, not the trainees.

Key addition - The above all assumes the trainee is on a remote buddy system. I accept the use case where there is only one Tx being handed between the trainee and instructor is much greyer; and in that instance I agree it would be sensible for the trainee to have passed the test before flying.

Edited By MattyB on 23/10/2019 14:13:36

Gary Manuel23/10/2019 14:24:55
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This reminds me of a discussion I had with a mate a few years (quite a few actually), where I was admiring his handywork after he had rewired, replumbed and redecorated his house.

The conversation went something like:

Me - "Why is your electric shower mounted so high?"

Him - "Regulations state that it must be mounted in such a position that the trailing water pipe cannot reach the water in the bath, thus causing a risk of dirty bath water being syphoned back into the water mains"

Me - "But you can hardy reach the controls"

Him - "Yes but it's the law".

Me - "OK"

He had to reposition it some weeks later, when his girlfriend moved in with him and couldn't reach.

Rules are for the guidance of wise men and the obedience of fools

Chris Berry23/10/2019 14:29:16
259 forum posts
1 photos

In terms of registration numbers I’d suggest the following could have been an option. Those who register through an association use their association number with a prefix BMFA, LMA etc.

The CAA then use that number with prefix and anyone who registers independently has a CAA prefix number. That way the same numbers are used and the CAA and DFT can see who is an association member and who is not. That will help in the future with audits of the success of the system.

Steve J23/10/2019 17:27:53
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1907 forum posts
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Posted by MattyB on 23/10/2019 14:09:35:
Posted by Steve J on 23/10/2019 11:23:58:
Posted by Cuban8 on 23/10/2019 10:14:10:

I'm inclined to think that anyone having a 'taster session' would be treated in the same way as someone having one of those trial lessons that full size flying clubs offer ...

Unfortunately it doesn't matter what you are inclined to think. What matters is what is says in the ANO and any permissions/exceptions/authorisations that the CAA give the associations.

Have you read articles 94D, F & G?

but I think we still need to remain pragmatic...

I appreciate your arguments, but EASA and the government have moved to this operator/remote pilot model and, to me, it is very clear that the remote pilot is expected to do the online test before touching the sticks.

If I was instructing at the moment, the first bit of homework that I would give a trainee would be to do the CAA test.

Steve

Jason-I23/10/2019 17:43:42
319 forum posts
44 photos
Posted by Steve J on 23/10/2019 17:27:53:
 

it is very clear that the remote pilot is expected to do the online test before touching the sticks

If I was instructing at the moment, the first bit of homework that I would give a trainee would be to do the CAA test.

Steve

At which point little Johnny would go home disappointed never to return. sad

I fly in a public space. It's rare that members of the public pass by, but when they do, and if they show an interest, I'll gladly let them have a go on the buddy box (I always carry a spare basic cheap tx, and most of my models have an eagletree guardian fitted, so I can switch to wing levelling mode for them). They are always most appreciative of this, and I think it is really good for the hobby.

Next time Joe public passes by and expresses real interest am I to say: "I'd love to give you a go, but you need to go home, study the rules, pass a test and register as a pilot before I can even let you near to the sticks", then send them away thinking I'm a mean spirited stuck up jobsworth, OR, am I to break the rules, let them have a go and send them away with a smile on their face?

I know which option I'll be choosing. wink

 

Edited By Jason-I on 23/10/2019 17:47:27

Jon - Laser Engines23/10/2019 18:19:31
5511 forum posts
268 photos

Did everyone ignore my post?

Sorry Steve but the BMFA are saying that a student under instruction is not an operator so does not have to take the test. So if a random person walks in off the street they are allowed to fly right from the off. Their argument is the same as most of us have presented here. Full size aircraft and driving instruction is commenced when a student has no qualifications at all and model flying will be the same. The only real difference is that slightly closer attention needs to be paid to the qualifications of the instructor.

Its a total non issue

Steve J23/10/2019 18:30:42
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1907 forum posts
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Posted by Jon - Laser Engines on 23/10/2019 18:19:31:

Sorry Steve but the BMFA are saying that a student under instruction is not an operator so does not have to take the test.

If the student owns (strictly speaking 'has management of' ) the model that they are flying, they are the operator.

If they are operating the flight controls by manual use of remote controls they are the remote pilot.

If the BMFA have an exemption to the above, all well and good, I look forward to seeing it.

Steve

Edited By Steve J on 23/10/2019 18:32:46

Jason-I23/10/2019 18:32:31
319 forum posts
44 photos
Posted by Jon - Laser Engines on 23/10/2019 18:19:31:

Did everyone ignore my post?

Sorry Steve but the BMFA are saying that a student under instruction is not an operator so does not have to take the test. So if a random person walks in off the street they are allowed to fly right from the off. Their argument is the same as most of us have presented here. Full size aircraft and driving instruction is commenced when a student has no qualifications at all and model flying will be the same. The only real difference is that slightly closer attention needs to be paid to the qualifications of the instructor.

Its a total non issue

yes

Good enough for me.

Don Fry23/10/2019 19:03:54
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4557 forum posts
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I'm confused. Going to shut up until it's sorted out. I hope the BFMA is right.

Bob Cotsford23/10/2019 19:34:57
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Damn but it gets confusing when posters refer to the person on the sticks as being the operator, while the CAA seem to use 'operator' to mean the person responsible for the maintainance and use of the UAV and the term 'competent person' or similar for the stick twiddler. It's a great pity they couldn't have stuck to nice clear terms like 'Operator or Keeper' (henceforth known as OOK) for the owner and ,say, 'Pilot On Sticks' (hka POS) so we could more easily diferentiate.

Martin_K23/10/2019 19:50:26
170 forum posts

Anyone confused can look at the The Air Navigation (Amendment) Order 2018

Scroll down to 94G (a) (i)

then up to 94F (2)

It is unequivocal.

Jason-I23/10/2019 19:52:10
319 forum posts
44 photos
Posted by Bob Cotsford on 23/10/2019 19:34:57:

Damn but it gets confusing when posters refer to the person on the sticks as being the operator, while the CAA seem to use 'operator' to mean the person responsible for the maintainance and use of the UAV and the term 'competent person' or similar for the stick twiddler. It's a great pity they couldn't have stuck to nice clear terms like 'Operator or Keeper' (henceforth known as OOK) for the owner and ,say, 'Pilot On Sticks' (hka POS) so we could more easily diferentiate.

They need to just do away with the whole pilot and operator thing and just have a pilot, who registers, takes the test and pays the fee. The whole operator thing makes the system biased towards big companies who could run potentially thousands of drones and pilots all for just a single £9 fee. (Whilst us mugs subsidise the registration system for them). The whole registration system is setup with future commercial use in mind which is why it's so expensive - and yet it is us expected to foot the bill for this.

This is just one of my fundamental objections about the whole rotten scheme and is why I will continue campaigning government about it.

Paul C.23/10/2019 20:04:30
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646 forum posts
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I have tried to follow all of the threads and comments on this subject but I have to admit that I am getting more confused as time goes by, all of the posers are I am sure are giving their best interpretation of what's happening and giving a heads up on any possible future pitfalls. The BMFA have clearly been working hard to get the best possible results and have done a grand job, I am confident that they will continue to do the best for us all.

To maintain my sanity I think that I will wait for my BMFA email updates on how to proceed and get on the SLEC web site to order some more balsa and adjourn to the workshop for a winter build project. Best get some more gas for the heater it's getting a little chilly out there.

Paul.

Paul C.23/10/2019 20:07:27
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646 forum posts
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Err that's posters not posers 😯😯😯😯 bloomin predictive text and me not reading it , sorry 😱

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