Wednesday, April 16, 2014

FAA roadblock

From page A4 | February 12, 2014 | 2 Comments

The Federal Aviation Administration is standing in the way of progress and taking too long to write rules about things it should have minimal, if any, say over.

Case No. 1 is aerial drones used by real estate photographers that don’t go any higher than 500 feet. Real estate photographers use balloons or mini-blimps that go up about 50-150 feet. That is little different than a hovering drone with a remote-controlled camera whose view can be seen by the operator. It’s not much different than flying a kite. In rural areas, which is uncontrolled air space, where’s the problem? In high-traffic areas like Los Angeles or the Bay Area the FAA should be able to come up with a maximum height similar to remote-controlled hobby aircraft and ban their use within so many miles of an airport.

The other commercial-type use that came in for a cease-and-desist order from the FAA was Lakemead Beer in Minnesota that apparently set up on the edge of a lake and delivered a 12-pack of beer to an ice fisherman’s shack at a low enough altitude to be “flying over the head of a curious onlooker.” The craft beer brewer is scoping out “drone ports around Minnesota lakes” in hopes the FAA will publish rules for small unmanned areal systems in a responsible time period.

Ice fishing drone ports? What a concept.

Case No. 2 of FAA overreach is its desire to regulate commercial space flight, such a Virgin Galactic. What’s the beef? Orbital debris. Yep, the FAA is worried about space junk. Try telling that to the Chinese and their frozen Moon vehicle. The FAA also wants to certify carrier planes that transport passenger rocket ships.

However, there is a 2004 law that called for minimal FAA regulation of the Virgin Galactic and a handful of other private projects aiming to take passengers into the upper reaches of the atmosphere. The FAA needs to back off. Let the passengers beware.

Mountain Democrat


Discussion | 2 comments

  • You BetFebruary 12, 2014 - 8:39 pm

    So if I use a RC airplane is that a drone? They are RC Hobbie Toys..... Federal Arrogance Administration....

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • You BetFebruary 12, 2014 - 8:56 pm

    How does the crew on Gold Rush Alaska Get away with using Drones to Film the Show... it is Very Obvious that they use multi-rotor aircraft.

    Reply | Report abusive comment


Motorcycle fatality in Greenwood

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1

Greenwood School being restored

By Rebecca Murphy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Cal Fire increasing staffing, hiring

By Cal Fire | From Page: B1

EID restricts watering days

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A1, 10 Comments

Lover’s Leap fall injures man

By Tahoe Tribune | From Page: A1

EDH Fire Dept. annexing Latrobe

By Noel Stack | From Page: A1, 7 Comments

Tea Party meeting April 17

By Tea Party Patriots Of El Dorado Hills | From Page: A3, 46 Comments

Town Hall Meeting on Underage Drinking May 1

By El Dorado Hills Community Vision Coalition | From Page: A6

Floating body not a body

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A7

Old mill a goner

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A11, 12 Comments | Gallery



A great big thanks

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Murder? Suicide?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 7 Comments

‘Drive Clean’

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 3 Comments

Middle class getting poorer?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 48 Comments

Real estate lies

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 13 Comments



Outside with Charlie: Switch gear

By Charlie Ferris | From Page: A8

Ponderosa volleyball is a family affair

By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A8 | Gallery

Aussie team makes visit

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A8

Griz have challenging day

By Mike Bush | From Page: A8 | Gallery

Roundup: April 15, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery



Men to walk a mile in her shoes

By Center For Violence-Free Relationships | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Runners stampede for Sugarloaf scholarships

By El Dorado County Office of Education | From Page: B2 | Gallery

At a glance: Take aim on fun

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B2

Team works to fight disease

By Placerville Kiwanis | From Page: B3

COOL School is accepting applications

By Rescue Union | From Page: B4

Band of Miwoks fund mission

By Shingle Springs Band Of Miwok Indians | From Page: B12



Crime Log: March 25-27

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

Weather stats 4-15-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2



Numa Edward “Ed” Roberts

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Ronald Russell Rohrer

By Contributor | From Page: A2, 2 Comments


Real Estate




By Contributor | From Page: A10

Flying McCoys

By Contributor | From Page: A10

Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A10

Working It Out

By Contributor | From Page: A10


By Contributor | From Page: A10


By Contributor | From Page: A10

New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A10


By Contributor | From Page: A10

Horoscope, Thursday, April 17, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A10

Horoscope, Wednesday, April 16, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A10

TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A10