Will Your Remote Control Model Be In The Line Of Fire?
ANN April 1 Special Edition
The FAA has announced that they will start monitoring the operations at model airplane airfields for illegal unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) violations. A UAS may also be defined as a UAV or a drone; but whatever you call it, radio controlled model aircraft enthusiasts are now on the watch list.
When ANN asked FAA administrator Michael Huerta what FAA regulation allowed this sort of monitoring he explained, “In 2007 the FAA issued a policy notice regarding UAS operation that requested voluntary compliance with the intent of the policy notice. The Academy of Model Aeronautics agreed with the policy notice and indicated a desire to urge members to voluntarily comply.” Huerta then pointed out that once anyone voluntarily agrees with an FAA policy notice the voluntary agreement becomes “quasi-regulatory,” and that compliance now becomes mandatory and enforceable under penalty of law. In other words, if you ever agree with the FAA you’re screwed forever.
Upon digging deeper, our ANN investigative reporter found that the FAA will be monitoring model airplane airfields by using their own fleet of UAVs. The FAA UAV missions will be flown over the model airplane fields to determine if operations fall within the quasi-regulatory requirements. These FAA spy UAVs have been designated U2-AVs. If any remotely piloted aircraft are found to be in violation, the TSA will be called into action with armed drones (designated FU-AVs) with the authority to shoot down the offending model aircraft. TSA agents will be dispatched to conduct electronic “pat downs” and, if you get lucky, a full cavity search of those operating the offending drone/UAV/ UAS.
After our ANN reporter found that the Raytheon Company is secretly developing a miniaturized air-to-air missile, it appears an escalation of hostilities may be on the horizon. Word has leaked out that some model airplane flyers have vowed to arm their own aircraft. This has led to some modelers painting “invasion stripes” on their aircraft to prevent being hit by friendly fire.
ANN will keep you posted on this disturbing development.