333 Exemption process

Discussion in 'Flight Regulations' started by MIke Magee, Jun 6, 2015.

  1. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127

    Gary

    I was referring to the proposed part 107 that will be only a test and a fee. Absolutely a minimum of Sport or higher is still required for the current 333 process.

    Although on the 333 you do not need to declare who your pilot is. In fact I have read many granted petition requests where the petitioner asks to have the pilot cert requirement waived. The FAA still grants the petition but denies waiving the pilot requirement. They mention that the PIC must hold one of the following an ATP, Commercial, Private, Recreational or Sport certificate with a valid drivers licence or medical in every single one. My understanding is that some law firms are encouraging people to ask the question anyway, in case the FAA switches course in the future. So far they have not. The only thing they did change was that one petition early on asked for the sport pilot to be the minimum standard as the very early ones required at least a private.
     
  2. Gary Haynes

    Gary Haynes Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    5,211
    Likes Received:
    460
    James, got it. So as proposed there is only a knowledge test. It will be interesting to see how it plays out. My bet is that the requirements for if/when 107 becomes reality will align more with the requirements we are seeing in the 333 process. I've never seen the FAA relax requirements for much of anything. Prime example. As a hot air balloon pilot the Balloon Federation of America has been trying for something like 30+ years to get the minimum flight altitudes for hot air balloons to be included with the section for helicopters. Helicopters can fly at basically any altitude that allows for an autorotation (emergency landing) to be accomplished. Hot air balloons have to follow the rules or regular aircraft. Common sense would say I'd rather have an emergency landing with a hot air balloon than a helicopter with all of the blades and higher mass. But that simple change still hasn't happened.

    So for commercial operations why would the FAA take a step back to relax what they have, especially if it has been working? Better yet the FAA 'know's that the current operators are already breaking the rules (PIC does not meet the 333 requirements). So if operators have already shown that 333 holders aren't responsible why drop the requirements even further.

    We live in interesting times.
     
  3. Steve Maller

    Steve Maller UAV Grief Counselor

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2012
    Messages:
    3,979
    Likes Received:
    807
    What's everybody's feeling for the timetable for the FAA to introduce the infrastructure to "license" small UAV operators by way of the recommendations put forward in the proposed rulemaking process?

    I am still quite reluctant to go through the process of obtaining a license for manned flight when, in fact, I have no intention of flying regularly (even in a hot air balloon :rolleyes:). But it's something of a Catch-22 right now.
     
  4. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127

    That was the question asked at the conference at AbleCine.

    While at the SOAC conference in Burbank, the thought was before it is codified in the actual CFR's it maybe as late as early 2018. There are a lot issues still to be ironed out. The film industry is trying to loosen up some of the restrictions such as not being able to fly at night and some of the standoff requirements near private property when on a permitted closed set. Right now there is a unreasonable burden to get property owner permission if you have to fly within 500 feet. This pretty much makes any filming in a urban environment on a permitted closed set with traffic control virtually impossible.

    These are the things need to be Ironed out before they rubber stamp and say here it is.

    Right now everything is a crap shoot. It could happen as early as this summer or later. My experience with the FAA in the commercial aviation arena was that certain things that are happening now like the NexGen navigation was supposed to be fully up and running by 2010. Now we are looking at 2020 before its fully integrated. I recall when flying KC-135's before being a "Droner" that the FAA was going to get rid of all terrestrial Navigation Aids by 2010 and go completely GPS/RNAV. That has not happened yet.

    Like Gary said a few posts above the FAA is not always the fastest to move. I would suggest to start the process now. You don't need the licence to apply. You just need it to comply. Worst case you apply for the 333 and get it at the same time the 107 rolls out. Best casse you get the 333 and there still is no 107 but at least you will be one step away from being legal.
     
    Steve Maller likes this.
  5. Steve Maller

    Steve Maller UAV Grief Counselor

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2012
    Messages:
    3,979
    Likes Received:
    807
    Thank you, Shaun!
     
  6. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    10,312
    Likes Received:
    1,153
    While it will not help with the current situation (whereby Federal Law demands that all pilots who fly in the national airspace system, even those flying sUA , have to have a some kind of pilot's certificate), but if you're curious as to how we got here and why it seems to hard for the DOT/FAA to get us out of here, I can recommend reading Philip Howard's, The Rule of Nobody. http://www.amazon.com/Rule-Nobody-S...1450559857&sr=8-1&keywords=the+rule+of+nobody

    The editorial reviews are revealing (my favorite is from Jon Stewart):

    Philip Howard has been on a lonely crusade for common sense, good government, and other quixotic ideas. He’s done it again with The Rule of Nobody, an utterly compelling and persuasive book that, if followed, could change the way America works―or doesn’t work. (Fareed Zakaria, author of The Post-American World)

    It’s so damn hard to fix things when people can’t―or won’t―make new choices. This powerful book shows how Washington is sinking in legal quicksand, literally beyond the power of those supposedly ‘in charge.’ Perhaps the only solution, as Howard argues, is to prune out these obsolete laws and chop away on the bureaucracy so that citizens of common sense can roll up their sleeves and get to work again as America has always done. Today, leadership is practically illegal. (Alan K. Simpson, U.S. senator, Wyo. (retired))

    Philip K Howard has always struck me as an eminently reasonable, articulate advocate for common sense solutions. No wonder no one listens to him. (Jon Stewart, The Daily Show)

    Philip Howard offers a startlingly fresh slant on what is holding America back. No one is free to make choices, including, especially, government officials. Regulatory law has become a nearly impenetrable web of detailed prohibitions and specifications. Everyone is hamstrung. Dense regulation discourages individuals, communities, and companies from taking new initiatives. It also prevents government officials from making the case-by-case judgment needed for effective regulatory oversight. This is an important reason why it is so expensive to start a business, why healthcare costs have gone through the roof, and why innovation has slowed to a crawl. (Professor Edmund S. Phelps, 2006 Nobel Prize in Economics and director, Center on Capitalism and Society)

    You’ll laugh and wince and cry at the ridiculous situation America has gotten itself into. Howard shows us how we manufactured the rope we are now hanging ourselves with. Then he shows us how to untie the noose and put America back on the path to trust, competence, and greatness. (Jonathan Haidt, author of The Righteous Mind)

    This book is so deep, appealing, and rousing that it has the potential to actually move politics out of its current stasis. (Christopher DeMuth, Distinguished Fellow, The Hudson Institute)

    Amid the liberal-conservative ideological clash that paralyzes our government, it’s always refreshing to encounter the views of Philip K. Howard, whose ideology is common sense spiked with a sense of urgency… [This] book drives home some large truths. (Stuart Taylor Jr. - The Wall Street Journal)

    Compelling. (Nick Gillespie - The Wall Street Journal)

    Howard’s proposed fix is witty, and intriguing: a follow-up to the Bill of Rights called the Bill of Responsibilities. These would be five new Constitutional amendments aimed at making government work better. (Kyle Smith - New York Post)

    Philip K. Howard’s important new book… helps to explain why government at all levels not only is on autopilot but on a flight path that can only end in disaster… The Rule of Nobody ‘envisions a shift in values―away from automatic government and toward a structure that allows humans to make choices needed to adapt to local need and global challenges.’ Well, here’s hoping. (Nick Gillespie - The Daily Beast)

    A convincing, provocative argument… Howard’s clear, levelheaded descriptions of how things are done elsewhere…proves his point: We really need to figure out a better way to operate, lest the country grind to a halt. (Jesse Singal - Boston Globe)

    Rather than asking what’s right to do, Howard contends, government asks what the rulebook says to do. As a result, waste occurs, debt rises, schools fail, health-care costs soar, the economy falters―and even problems that seem simple and easy to solve become bureaucratic nightmares. (Alan Wallace - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)
     
    James Adkins and Shaun Stanton like this.
  7. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,711
    Likes Received:
    311
    Steve as we talked about before I was in a similar mind set you had. I figured what's the point of getting a pilot license (time and money) if its going to change. After giving it a lot of thought the chances are more than likely that the official rules will not be ready for June or even 2016. In addition, having the pilots license will give you higher credentials for an aerial job for larger corporations that can't afford for the UAV operator to skimp on safety and best practices. The local TV station that I will be working with wants their UAV operator to have a pilots license regardless if the FAA requires it. There are some insurance companies that will not offer insurance unless you have a pilots license. All of this made me realize i can't afford to take the chance. In the process of passing the written test and with the amount of flying lessons I have taken it sure gives me a new outlook as to how I go about my UAV flights for preparation and execution. It's made me a better professional for sure. I am driving back and forth from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati (9 hour round trip) and I am definitely think I"m making the right choice.

    Lastly don't rule out that you probably won't fly after you get a license because it is super fun once you start getting comfortable with the airplane. I have every intention of getting my private license after my sports pilot.
     
  8. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    10,312
    Likes Received:
    1,153

    Dave: You must fly after you get a license if you wish to keep your license current and meet the requirements of your Section 333.
    But, you're right -- having a pilot's license (along with the knowledge, experience, and training you acquire as a result), certainly makes you a better sUA pilot with a better appreciation of what's going on in the airspace around you.

    Andy.
     
    Alex Fuller likes this.
  9. James Adkins

    James Adkins Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    21
    Steve,

    When I started working on my license, the PPL was the minimum with a 333. Looking back now I would still have gone the same path now, even with the lesser options. It's really not that much more time and cost to enjoy the additional benefits of the private license.

    The knowledge part makes dealing with the manned aviation world so much smoother. June 2016 is the FAA target date for part 107. Their record for making targets hasn't been good.
     
  10. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    10,312
    Likes Received:
    1,153
    Good points, James. The last word I heard was for mid-June for the issuance of the sUA Final Rule -- but remember the real question is the date when it goes into effect, and that could be months later.

    Andy
     
  11. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127

    Some aviation lawyers seem to think it will be longer as the proposed version we see now may not be as close to what the final draft will be. Its a crap shoot.
     
  12. James Adkins

    James Adkins Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    21
  13. Gary Haynes

    Gary Haynes Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    Messages:
    5,211
    Likes Received:
    460
    His last sentence about how to learn implies a certain amount of ignorance. Maybe it was said in jest. Maybe his point is that there are lots of 333 holders who really don't know how to fly since there is no practical test. Other than the PIC needing some type of FAA pilots license there aren't any specific requirements for flight experience other than what is in your 333 and are self certifying.
     
  14. James Adkins

    James Adkins Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    21
    I had thought the FAA was balking on commercial drone schools over concerns about assuring student safety. It's like they don't understand how well the AMA safety code works in a controlled setting and want something more like the closed set MPTOM that everyone has cut and pasted so proudly. I have visions of students flying from inside shark cages as being something they would buy off on.

    They get hung up on things that a very simple and manageable, like this issue and night operations for example.
     
  15. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    10,312
    Likes Received:
    1,153
    It's worth pondering that the FAA's Notice of Proposed Rule Making did not include even the idea of flight training or flight proficiency testing for pilots.

    Who knows whether those gaps will still be in the sUAS Final Rule, but, if they are, then yup, you'll have the aeronautical knowledge from taking then Knowledge Test, but it'll be just "Buy, Fly, Crash'n'Cry" when it comes to training/learning to fly.

    Certainly having a pilots certificate makes you a better sUAV pilot in terms of general aviation knowledge, but the actual flying skills were really not that transferable (which goes a long way towards answering my wife's question when she sees me land and asks gently, "Was it supposed to do that?" :rolleyes:).

    Andy
     
  16. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127


    My take on it is this. Flying RC planes before getting a licence, probably not much gained for that pilot in experience. Getting a private pilots licence then starting to fly fly drones, probably is the least safe between the two. However, take someone who has a career in aviation but no RC experience at least there is basis for safety.

    In my experience having never touched a RC type plane until 4 years ago (MQ-1 doesn't count) I believe my prior experiences helped me fly safe. Did I have I have the awesome skills of some kiddo who flew the Trex around the park for a few years, nope. Did I understand that and knew what my limitations were before I went out and flew? Yup absolutely.

    I knew two things when getting into this. I knew I had my limitations in skill set. I knew I did not fully understand the limitations of the system. The main one being that awesome Mikrokopter controlled 4S Cinestar 8. Knowing the two I knew where my baseline was and how to take iterative steps to gain the skill set necessary to fly the craft in an effective manner. Lots of practice in the sim helped with the monkey skills. But taking the CS out to fly was the only way to practice those skills and find where the limits of the cinestar 8 was. By knowing the two I could comfortably fly the thing in a manner that allowed me to achieve the intent of the flight.

    I guess my point is lacking the skills of RC flying but having the judgement of my aviation experience allowed me to make early on the safe decisions on how and where to fly. This ingrained into my aeronautical decision making process on how to fly these things. Now after 4 years, my skill set is up to where it needs to be. The systems are more robust and I can fly now much more aggressively than I did when starting. (Aggressive, meaning the mindset of being smooth and deliberate with the craft putting it where you want it to go, in other words being a pilot.)

    Obviously for someone just getting into this there needs to be a training system out there to teach ORM and ADM, as well as understanding the fundamentals of the craft they fly as well as practical skills. The problem we have now, is that people go out, get a system, and have no clue how the different functions of it really work. That lack of knowledge makes them very unsafe. Also the FAA needs to vet who should be training, as there is a for profit school here, in Albuquerque, where the founder whos only experience was a Phantom, went on the news and stated that "the way a Quadcopter works is the front two motors provide thrust and the back two allow it to steer!" And he has been charging money to "certify" people.:eek:
     
    Alex Fuller likes this.
  17. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    10,312
    Likes Received:
    1,153
    NO! It's the other way around. The front two steer and the back ones provide the lift. This guy knows nothing! :)

    Andy.
     
  18. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127
    All this time I thought it was the right side that provided lift and the left side allowed it to steer.:confused: Ha ha Lol!

    On a serious note. Ok when this kid said that on the news, one could infer, maybe he misspoke. Nope, he said it at a film conference where he was on a drone panel next to my business partner. He said it there in front of the Local 600 reps for the southwest region. My business partner afterwords, politely told him to never say that ever again. Supposedly, he claims he learned it at UVU's little drone training session that they had at NAB. I met some of them, and I highly doubt they said that.
     
  19. James Adkins

    James Adkins Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    21
    If the FAA's plan to safely integrate commercial drones into the NAS is based solely on admnistrative procedures, then we have only seen a small sample of the ugly that is coming down the pike.

    Simply having a 333, MPTOM and license does not qualify anyone to fly on a movie set. Any production that hires someone to fly, having only these credentials is foolish, yet that is what is often happening. About half of our work this past year came about because someone else crashed. I started flying models as a kid and never stopped. It's hard to explain the skills needed to safely track a moving object, in close quarters, in windy conditions, in fading light, all while the DP is making requests in real time. By far the best at this are RC pilots who have thousands of flight hours flying with no flight controller or autopilot. They are so far ahead of the aircraft that they never crash from lack of situational awareness.

    An equally important skill is knowing when to say no. The pilot who almost hit the downhill skier is one of thousands who haven't learned that lesson yet but have muddied the pond further in the process. I see so many get in over their heads without ever realizing it until it's too late. Training and testing are the only solutions to improving all this.
     
    Tim Joy and Alex Fuller like this.
  20. Shaun Stanton

    Shaun Stanton Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    127

    I agree with you in the sense that yes just because person who has the MPTOM and the 333 is not a reason alone to be hired. However, I have personally been on the business end of someone with no RC experience or any exemption get on set and fly. This guy had a beautiful website claiming he was the countries leading expert and top drone pilot in the US. Why not doubt him, he runs a drone school? He also thought that how a quad works was the statement I mentioned above. He lied his ass off claiming that he had an exemption to legally fly. He was convincing enough as well as being cheap that he got the gig until the FAA showed up to set, thanks to a little birdie who happened to drop a line to the FSDO. At the end of the day 3 companies flew for that production, it was such fck up that should not have happened.

    As for trad RC pilots only being the best in film. Nope, we had a guy who flew trad heli competitions for years and crashed a Cinestar 8 Heavy on set because he lost orientation to his craft. I will admit he can fly one hell of an RC Helicopter. But, he destroyed the CS8 and destroyed his personal Red that he bought. His reason was that he was too used to being able to distinguish the tail of an actual trad heli. Consequently he went back to being a best boy electric after his wife was nervous that he would crash again. In a sense its apples and oranges.

    Once I learned the system and how to fly a multi. I have been successful at following a target. I akin it to flying jets in formation and doing what we call station keeping. Every Air Force pilot to graduate has to fly on the wing of another jet with 3 feet of separation and be able to land on same runway with lead. Its a concept that can be equally applied to this world. As I have many times proven to do this without having ever flown a Trex 650 at the AMA field. Actually I have flown a couple of trad helis now, and its not that difficult. In fact I think they are easier than pure manual mode multi rotors. Either way, both systems are apples and oranges, when you compare one can aerodynamically fly, while the other cant.

    In short I agree there needs to be evaluation standards like everything else in the FAA. You should have to prove your competency and skill to be able to fly these systems legally in the NAS.

    I also agree with you when to say no. And that's a huge problem and was discussed at the SOAC conference at length. I always try to findan alternative to get close to what they want. Once I was asked to fly 3 feet in front of talent. I said fck NO!. Instead, I said I can fly a longer lens and get an equivalent shot. That worked and they were happy.

    I too have been hired after the fact that some jackass tried to fly on set and crashed. My favorite is when the production buys the DP a drone and says they will do it themselves. I just say tell me when you need me to actually get the shot after your guy crashes.
     
    Alex Fuller likes this.

Share This Page