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Please review airspace’s before flying


Mar 21, 2018
Pulling into my neighborhood today a guy was about to takeoff with a DJI phantom drone, he was the photographer for a wedding at a golf course. Where he was planning to fly was .8 miles from the end of the runway of a class D airport.

I am a pilot and often time will make this approach slightly lower than others because I am passing my house. Seeing someone about to takeoff there really hit home for me. Where he was planning to fly would place him right where I fly my approach.

When asked he said that he wasn’t in restricted airspace. Said he was being paid as the photographer of the wedding and that the area wasn’t restricted and he said restricted airspace doesn’t let him take off at all. Now I know that isn’t true since I have a Mavic drone and I have pulled it out in my office at the airport. It won’t let me fly there, but go across the street and you can. Still well within controlled airspace.
I showed him on foreflight, I don’t think he knew how to read the sectional he looked at it like a deer in the headlights.

He claimed to have a UAS rating but didn’t have it on him and the drone registration was not on the drone. He said he didn’t need a 107 waiver. Just isn’t true.

Please be aware of where you are flying these! Just because the drone lets you takeoff doesn’t mean it is ok. Just as I was talking to him 3 airplanes flew over our heads around 400-500 feet. One guy coming in a little bit low could cause a huge problem.

As of right now I’m debating whether to report him to the FAA. He did give me his name and phone number (he texted it to me)People flying drones like this should be fined. This was a perfect example of incorrect and uneducated drone usage.
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This is exactly why the FAA and whoever will clamp down on us with a heavy hand.
Idiots like this guy will soon create a very bad situation that will ultimately take away any control we have to police ourselves.
At the end of the day I am afraid that we are going to be on the short end of the stick with very little leverage to retain our ability to fly without crushing control and reporting.
I can see the day when we all witll have to file a flight plan and worse yet wait until some government agancy reviews and approves the plane even to fly around in our own back yard.

If we do not self police we are subjuct to someone who will. Not sure if I would have reported this guy I would have to decide based on my conversation with him and his understanding of the situation he would cause. based on what you have said here this clown clearly knew he was in violation if nothing more than not having a FAA reg on the drone. I would at least have reported him to the control tower in the Cl D space he was violating.
Turn him in Golf, please.

Retired military and commercial pilot.
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