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New FAA Interim Guidelines: How, When and Where You Can Fly Recreationally

Andre Levite

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I just received this email from the FAA with new "interim" guidelines. Presumably the "final" guidelines will be posted when LAANC is open to recreational pilots.

Thankfully these are the clearest rules FAA has ever published. Let's just hope they open more airspace once we can all get flight clearance online

10320
 

SirThomas

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5.1 is disappointing as it seems to imply NO flying within the 5-mile radius of controlled airport rather than being able to fly at lower altitude and with tower or FBO notification. Will be awaiting use of LAANC.
 
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Andre Levite

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5.1 is disappointing as it seems to imply NO flying within the 5-mile radius of controlled airport rather than being able to fly at lower altitude and with tower or FBO notification. Will be awaiting use of LAANC.
Yes. These are truly just INTERIM regulations. No timeline yet for LAANC for recreational pilots - I'm also eager to get a start date.
 

Heckmaniac

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So can't fly within 5 miles of class G small airport even with notification? There is practically no place to fly then nearby. I just flew 2 days ago and spoke to the local small airport managers notifying them - they didn't say anything to me about not being able to.
 

Heckmaniac

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Also where do I go to take the aeronautical knowledge and safety test - is that required in the U.S. today for hobbyists?
 

Heckmaniac

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So can't fly within 5 miles of class G small airport even with notification? There is practically no place to fly then nearby. I just flew 2 days ago and spoke to the local small airport managers notifying them - they didn't say anything to me about not being able to.
Disregard as appears I skipped over point #6. Fly under 400 ft when in class G airspace (my bad). So as hobbyist I can still notify class G small airport within 5 miles - correct?
 

Andre Levite

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So can't fly within 5 miles of class G small airport even with notification? There is practically no place to fly then nearby. I just flew 2 days ago and spoke to the local small airport managers notifying them - they didn't say anything to me about not being able to.
No. You can't fly within 5 miles of an airport because it is controlled airspace (item 5). And you aren't permitted to call the tower (item 5.2).

Dedicated RC aircraft fields are an exception to the above but those are often dominated by fixed wing aircraft.

This should all get fixed when LAANC is open to recreational pilots and we can get once again get authorizations to fly within 5 mile radius of airports.
 

Heckmaniac

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No. You can't fly within 5 miles of an airport because it is controlled airspace (item 5). And you aren't permitted to call the tower (item 5.2).

Dedicated RC aircraft fields are an exception to the above but those are often dominated by fixed wing aircraft.

This should all get fixed when LAANC is open to recreational pilots and we can get once again get authorizations to fly within 5 mile radius of airports.
Hmmm - that is a bit confusing with point #6 being listed seperately then. Would make more sense as being item #5.3. Not sure this is going to be followed as closely as they hope - unless DJI grounds folks through the app. Nearly impossible to find more than a few hundred feet that doesn't fall under class G in NJ (overlapping circles everywhere). Why the need for the interim ruling prior to LAANC availability?
 

Andre Levite

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Hmmm - that is a bit confusing with point #6 being listed seperately then. Would make more sense as being item #5.3. Not sure this is going to be followed as closely as they hope - unless DJI grounds folks through the app. Nearly impossible to find more than a few hundred feet that doesn't fall under class G in NJ (overlapping circles everywhere). Why the need for the interim ruling prior to LAANC availability?
Last year legislation repealed Section 336 in favor of new Section 349 regulations for recreation flyers. Unfortunately there was contradictory wording that made the date of transition from 336 to 349 unclear. This resulted in two sets of rules in effect simultaneously (kind of - but not really).

The interim rules were supposed to clarify this until they have a date for Section 349 to start. But that seems to be waiting for LAANC and the FAA's app to get updated with electronic flight clearance.

The interim rules include a competency test which doesn't exist yet so that's another issue.
 

Heckmaniac

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Last year legislation repealed Section 336 in favor of new Section 349 regulations for recreation flyers. Unfortunately there was contradictory wording that made the date of transition from 336 to 349 unclear. This resulted in two sets of rules in effect simultaneously (kind of - but not really).

The interim rules were supposed to clarify this until they have a date for Section 349 to start. But that seems to be waiting for LAANC and the FAA's app to get updated with electronic flight clearance.

The interim rules include a competency test which doesn't exist yet so that's another issue.
Honestly I'm not sure this is clear enough to follow - some is in effect and some isn't yet (too vague and disorganized). Thanks for clarifying where you could.
 

shanover

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for what its worth, I have a small, regional airport about 4 miles away from my house, it already has LAANC, and using it allows me to fly in my back yard, since I am fairly new to this sport, I have not flown very high or far, but with the LAANC authorization, you answer 3 questions, and off you go.

edit to add: I have never been refused to be allowed to fly, and it only takes seconds, the phone screen will say 'cannot take off' and I am presented with the LAANC screen almost immediately.
 

Heckmaniac

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I thought hobbyists didn't have access to LAANC yet - looking forward to learning what I need to do soon. There are very few areas near me that isn't close to a small regional airport.
 

Hawkwind

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No. You can't fly within 5 miles of an airport because it is controlled airspace (item 5). And you aren't permitted to call the tower (item 5.2).

Dedicated RC aircraft fields are an exception to the above but those are often dominated by fixed wing aircraft.

This should all get fixed when LAANC is open to recreational pilots and we can get once again get authorizations to fly within 5 mile radius of airports.
Incorrect. You are permitted to fly within class G airspace. The 5 mile radius no longer applies. The important point is as a recreational flyer, you cannot fly within controlled airspace (yet), and smaller airports are not within controlled airspace below 700 ft.
 
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Hawkwind

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Also, Ken Heron is mistaken about the minimum age. You do not have to be 16. According to the FAA AC:

7.1.8.1 Persons 13 years of age or older may register aircraft.
 

Heckmaniac

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Incorrect. You are permitted to fly within class G airspace. The 5 mile radius no longer applies. The important point is as a recreational flyer, you cannot fly within controlled airspace (yet), and smaller airports are not within controlled airspace below 700 ft.
That's how I read it as well (still should be clearer). So do I still need to call the small class G airports to notify of flying nearby or that no longer applies even though LAANC isn't available for they hobbyist yet?
 

Northwood Mediaworks

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Up here in Canada, we are restricted from controlled airspace unless we get the advanced certification, its not a problem for me, I prefer rural scenery, but it has annoyed those who only have the basic cert now. And you must be at least 16. I am pretty sure someone will have commented the age error to Ken Heron. I am beginning the study process to get our advanced cert, which appears to be more arduous than the part 107 process (at least right now). It certainly seems like the FAA and Transport Canada are talking back and forth lately. A new reality for all of us.
 

Hawkwind

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There is no requirement to notify airports/airfields in uncontrolled airspace. Of course, we are still required to give way to manned aircraft (rule 4), which means that we should do nothing to endanger those flights.
 
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