Revised June 2021
The following guidelines are to provide parameters that are easy to follow and that prioritize safety while allowing individuals to enjoy the full recreational, educational, and scientific benefits of model aviation.
General Safety Guidelines
- All safety guidelines must be followed in order to participate at this current FTCA event/location.
- All flying at this event/location must be for recreational purposes only, unless otherwise noted and approved.
- Never fly your model aircraft in a dangerous, careless or reckless manner.
- Pre-flight your aircraft before each flight, make sure it is in good operating condition.
- Never interfere with, and always give way to, any manned aircraft.
- Keep your model aircraft below 400 feet above-ground-level (AGL).
- Keep your model aircraft within your visual line of sight.
- All FAA regulations for UAS are assumed in these guidelines and must be maintained at all times.
Novice Pilots – For your first few hours of flight time with your first model aircraft, only fly in open areas well away from people, buildings, and cars; also, keep your aircraft below 200 feet above-ground-level and within 500 horizontal feet of yourself.
● It is highly recommended that you have a knowledgeable pilot/trainer present during your first flights.
Distance Offset – Do not fly your model aircraft closer than 5 feet laterally from spectators.
● (Very small “toy” model aircraft may be flown closer with the consent of the spectator(s).)
Overflight of People – Do not fly a model aircraft weighing more than 4 pounds directly over an unprotected person other than yourself. For model aircraft that weigh 4 pounds or less, do not fly directly over unprotected people who have not expressly consented to the overflight.
● Overflight should only be conducted once you are experienced with, and confident in, the equipment you are using. The duration of any overflight of unprotected people should be minimized.
Autonomous Flight Modes – Autonomous or self-piloting flight modes should only be engaged if there is an override ability. When using such modes in a location where there may be manned air traffic, you or an assistant must always maintain the ability to engage the override and resume direct control of the model aircraft.
● Failsafe modes such as automatic return-to-home are exempt from this guideline.
Outdoor First Person View Operations – When flying with video goggles (or similar devices that block your view of the surrounding airspace), you must have another person act as a spotter to monitor the airspace for any manned air traffic or people. Long-range FPV is not permitted.
● Flight through predetermined, obstacle-filled areas is permitted without a spotter provided that you ensure in advance that the location is clear of any people and/or additional obstructions.
Night Operations – Only fly your model aircraft at night if the model aircraft is equipped with lights sufficient for you to see the orientation and flight direction of the model aircraft.
● Prior to your flight at night, check for obstacles that may not be easily seen in the dark.
Regulations’ Disclaimer – These Safety Guidelines are independent from any local government regulatory or legal requirements for model aircraft operation in the current flight location. It is each model aircraft pilot’s responsibility to learn and comply with local, applicable laws.