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AMA Membership

Cybernaut

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Has anyone looked into AMA membership? It looks like most of the fixed wing and RC helicopter clubs near me require membership. There are some benefits, such as liability insurance. Plus the Section 336 Special Rules imply that membership in a national organization is a requirement.

Homepage | Academy of Model Aeronautics

To fly under the Special Rule for Model Aircraft, you must operate in accordance with community-based aero-modeling club safety guidelines and within the programming of a nationwide community-based aero-modeling organization.

Is this anything that's worthwhile?
 

microlinux

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Membership per se is not a requirement under 336, you are just supposed to follow the rules of a "nationwide community-based aero-modeling organization". To my knowledge, the FAA hasn't explicitly declared what that means, but they have said the AMA is one such organization.

As far as liability insurance, my understanding is theirs is a supplementary policy, meaning it pays out if you have your own liability insurance and exceed it's limits.
 

Cybernaut

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As far as liability insurance, my understanding is theirs is a supplementary policy, meaning it pays out if you have your own liability insurance and exceed it's limits.
Well, that lowers the value of membership. :D

I was thinking it might be worthwhile to join if I didn't have to buy other insurance. I'll have to check out their site to find the details.
 

microlinux

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I was thinking it might be worthwhile to join if I didn't have to buy other insurance. I'll have to check out their site to find the details.
If you have homeowner's or renter's insurance, good chance that would cover liability, you can check with your agent. I was able to bump mine up the maximum liability coverage for very little.
 

tcope

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. Plus the Section 336 Special Rules imply that membership in a national organization is a requirement.
The FAA has confirmed that you don't need to be a member of the AMA to satisfy the requirements under Section 336.

CBO has been discussed many times. You don't need to join any company/business in order to comply.
 

Dronix

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Microlinux.....I'm not aware of any Homeowners or Renters Insurance Carrier that extends Liability to drones. I think they your Agent informed you incorrectly. I'd keep any documentation you have from that Agent implying you have coverage.
 

tcope

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Microlinux.....I'm not aware of any Homeowners or Renters Insurance Carrier that extends Liability to drones. I think they your Agent informed you incorrectly. I'd keep any documentation you have from that Agent implying you have coverage.
Obviously homeowners and renters insurance contain liability coverage. Why do you think this would not extend to use of a drone?

(it does)
 

microlinux

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Microlinux.....I'm not aware of any Homeowners or Renters Insurance Carrier that extends Liability to drones. I think they your Agent informed you incorrectly. I'd keep any documentation you have from that Agent implying you have coverage.
It's fairly common, at least in the US. Mine definitely does (as long as the flight is recreational).
 

dronerdave

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The AMA in the USA is fighting for your right to fly under 336 and constantly lobbies for us to keep those rights. Probably the best association that the idiot lawmakers passing ignorant "drone" rules are up against. They cut through the fake media and try to educate people about the real model aviation world. However I'm sure some don't like a few of their suggested rules:

Key elements of AMA's Safety Code include the requirement to see and avoid manned aircraft and maintain model aircraft operations within visual line of sight. In addition to operating within our safety programming, AMA members must comply with the following rules and guidelines. Non AMA members, those who do not fully satisfy the criteria in Section 336, and/or commercial operators must comply with a different set of regulations and certifications.

1. Register

  • On December 12, 2017, President Trump signed legislation that restores the FAA’s UAS registration requirement, including for AMA members. Learn more and register on the FAA's website.
2. Notify Airports

  • Notify airports within five miles before operations.
  • Remain below 400 feet above the ground when within 3 miles of an airport unless there is notification or an agreement with the airport that allows models to safely go higher.
3. Earn a Remote Pilot's Certificate (if needed)

  • AMA Members operating within our community-based programming for recreation do not need this certificate.
  • Members who plan to conduct any commercial, civil service, or non recreational flight will need to take a test and earn a remote pilot's certificate.
  • Testing is approximately $150 at an FAA testing center.
4. Be Aware of No Fly Zones

  • Do not fly near stadiums, critical infrastructure (correctional facilities, water treatment centers, utilities, etc...), or large open air events.
  • Avoid pedestrians, moving vehicles, busy roadways, powerlines, obstacles, deteriorating weather.
  • Respect the privacy and property of others.
  • Be aware of community ordinances and guidelines.
  • Comply with Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) and no fly zones.

I'm not too sure about how they insure you or what the guidelines are but assume if you fly outside their guidelines, it would be possible that the AMA insurance wouldn't cover you. I fly fixed wing on a weekly basis and have not only have had a few close calls with out of control aircraft, but a few months back had a plane actually hit me. Ouch!
 

tcope

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The AMA in the USA is fighting for your right to fly under 336 and constantly lobbies for us to keep those rights. Probably the best association that the idiot lawmakers passing ignorant "drone" rules are up against.
Can you give any examples of this?

Did they effectively get rid of the pointless drone registration? Nope. That was done by one person who sued the FAA.

What has the AMA done for drone fliers?
 

tcope

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The answer to what the AMA has done for drone fliers is... they have a blog?

Or is is that are stating that they have done something because.... they have done something?

Yes, they are invited (along with a lot of other people) to talk about drone related things but what have they _actually_ done? What was their position on the worthless drone registration? Did they argue for it or against it? The FAA illegally created additional regulations against drone fliers and the AMA participated in that illegal creation. Did the AMA challenge the FAA's ability to further regulate drone fliers? Nope... as I stated, they actually had a hand in creating that regulation (as they so proudly state in the linked blog). It took someone else to prove that it was not legal. When local authorities created illegal local laws against drones does the AMA contact these entities and argue on the behalf of drone fliers? I could go on and on about how the AMA not only does nothing to help drone fliers but I can also point out where they actually help create more regulations against us.

About the most I've seen the AMA do is call out the FAA on the 400' "rule".

What the AMA __is_ semi-good at is _saying_ they they do a lot in order to create membership and increase revenue from membership dues.
 
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macoman

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Agreed with you... It's kind of funny to read in their website that the AMA fight for your freedom of flying. Maybe for the regular RC airplanes that need special field location to fly.
 

dronerdave

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Yeah I can kinda agree with that. I didn't have a choice not to join as our club requires it for our insurance. I would have never joined the AMA if I wasn't club flying. They are definitely looking for more memberships which means more money for them. The actual industry probably has more teeth (and money for lawyers) than the AMA. I also feel the AMA is more in tune with VLOS as compared to NON-VLOS FPV flying. It's very possible that they might be OK with adding more rules on certain UAV operations. The problem here is that flying is a privilege not a right and overall we're all a minority compared to the rest of the population. How the Senate looks at specific UAV rules and practices in the future is gonna to be interesting.
 
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