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Questions affecting all of us

avbug

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Avbug, take a rest. I didn't say it was ok to kill someone by accident. But there is a big difference in just flying along minding your business and a skydiver winds up in front of you, to aiming at someone and hitting them.

Drunk drivers sometimes take the stand that they're merely driving along, and a telephone poll or a lady pushing a baby carriage jump out in front of them.

"Just flying along minding your own business and a skydiver winds up in front of you?" This pilot was buzzing a drop zone, making passes through the landing area for skydivers under canopy. It's the same aircraft that dropped the skydivers. The jumper that was killed exited the airplane that killed him. I don't see any way the pilot could possibly argue that he was surprised by the presence of the jumpers, or that he was merely flying along minding his own business. Do you??

If I decide to race my car through a crowded schoolyard full of children, one might guess I'd be charged with a crime...especially if I hit one. Likewise, if one decides to buzz a drop zone filled with jumpers under canopy and strikes one, then one might presume that this isn't a matter of flying along "minding one's own business" and striking a wayward jumper who just happened to be in the sky. Especially if one is the person who dropped that jumper. Go figure.

Careless and reckless operation that endangers persons and property in the air, and on the ground. Proximity to persons or property on the surface. With a NOTAM published for jumpers, having dropped the jumpers, buzzing the landing spot for those under canopy, while they're under canopy.

If you'd read my post, I noted that this same thing happened to me at that drop zone...only I wasn't struck. As you might suppose, mine isn't a passing interest...neither is that of others on the board who knew the pilot and the jumper involved.

Can't you make an intelligent post without belittling the original poster or is that the only way you can make an argument?

The original poster makes some increadibly stupid statements, and then continually defends them. I think the comments are warranted. That's the reason I made them. Perhaps before you respond with the foolish observation you did, you'll learn more about the situation, too.
 

AngelKing

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I also said I was not familiar with the case. If he was doing what you said then I agree he should be prosecuted. And I wasn't alking about drunk drivers, I also think they should be prosecuted.

You do make some good points in your post. But you negate them with your vile attitude towards anyone who says something you don't agree with.

To put a twist on an old quote:

"I have read all of Duke Elegants post, and you sir, are no Duke Elegant"

AK
 
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avbug

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You think that's vile? Don't get me started. That was kind.

I never tried to be Duke Elegant...don't intend to start.

Grow some thicker skin and read the subject before you post. That wil save from ignorantly posting and then becoming offended at the replies.
 

avbug

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Luckily swass has arrived to elevate the conversation and contribute something to the thread...again :rolleyes: .

Your inability to add something meaningful speaks volumes. Thanks for playing.
 

AngelKing

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Avbug, I have always tried to post as if I was talking to the person face to face even if I didn't agree with them. You should learn to do the same. But then, either you have class, or you don't.

AK
 
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Swass

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Avvy, how come most people feel the same way I do? Just look at how many tiffs you've had lately. You are a very abrasive person, at least online. No wonder you have had a rocky personal past in relationships (according to you). I wonder why.

Must be fun to sit shoulder to shoulder with you for extended periods of time. LOL. Smoochy smooch.

Prick.
 

FN FAL

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And now for something entirely different...

The alleged beach-buzzing pilot who sent scores of Santa Cruz sun bathers scrambling last May is facing misdemeanor charges for the stunt.

Santa Cruz District Attorney Bob Lee announced that Kenneth Walter Yanz has been charged with reckless flying and flying an aircraft at an altitude deemed unsafe by the Federal Aviation Administration.

The decision to prosecute Yanz came after prosecutors review the findings of a lengthy investigation by the FAA, which recently suspended Yanz' third-class pilot's license, the DA's office said.

Beach-goers near the Santa Cruz boardwalk and near Seacliff dived into the sand and otherwise scrambled to safety on the warm afternoon of May 24, when the pilot of a small 1979 Cessna plane swooped down from the sky and, according to witnesses, came within a few feet of hitting people on the crowded beaches.

Yanz is scheduled for arraignment late next month.

No biographical information about Yanz was provided in a news release from the district attorney's office, but according to the FAA's online pilot's directory, the only pilot with that name has an address in Corning, which is in Tehama County.

Yanz could not be reached for comment.
 

atrdriver

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avbug said:
"Just flying along minding your own business and a skydiver winds up in front of you?" This pilot was buzzing a drop zone, making passes through the landing area for skydivers under canopy. It's the same aircraft that dropped the skydivers. The jumper that was killed exited the airplane that killed him. I don't see any way the pilot could possibly argue that he was surprised by the presence of the jumpers, or that he was merely flying along minding his own business. Do you??

I agree, this pilot did something that he shouldn't have done in making a low pass when he could assume that jumpers were still in the air.

Lets say, though, you are flying along VFR at 4500 feet, in class E airspace, enjoying the day, not talking to anyone when a jumper descends directly in front of you. There is nothing that you can do to avoid hitting him, and you do, killing him. You land ASAP and report what happened. Should you be prosecuted for that? If the jump zone wasn't NOTAM'd? You are not required to be talking to anyone, and seeing a jumper from a moving airplane isn't that easy a thing to do.
 

avbug

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Avbug, I have always tried to post as if I was talking to the person face to face even if I didn't agree with them.

So do I. You don't get any different treatment than if were were having the same conversation face to face, except I'm possibly a little nicer, here.

Lets say, though, you are flying along VFR at 4500 feet, in class E airspace, enjoying the day, not talking to anyone when a jumper descends directly in front of you. There is nothing that you can do to avoid hitting him, and you do, killing him. You land ASAP and report what happened. Should you be prosecuted for that?

If you are fulfilling your duties as pilot in command, probably not. However, the specific circumstances of the situation should be examined. Just as an unintentional death on a motorway or any other place may still result in charges of negligence, manslaughter, and even homicide...the same may be applied equally to a similiar act in the air.

If upon investigation, for example, a discovery is made that the pilot has missed several radio calls during the course of the flight, a zelous prosecutor might make the case that the pilot was inattentive and therefore neglegent. Is he really negligent or inattentive? I certainly can't say; only one investigating the situation in real-time could make the call.

Conversely, if the skydiver strikes the airplane or it occurs the other way around and everybody is fulfilling their obligations and duties to see and avoid, talk, check NOTAMs, etc, then I imagine the only issues that might arise would be civil. Again, it's purely speculation as to what might occur...we can only address actual situations in this case to determine what course will be followed. In the case in question, apparently criminal charges are the order of the day.

If you're asking if I think a random accident constitutes a criminal act, no, of course I do not. However, a great many circumstances need to be considered. In this case, I think it's fairly easy to see the logic in at least considering charges against the individual in question, owing to the fact that he was not in the right place, doing the right thing, and the special consideration that the deceased was in the air because the pilot put him there.
 

FN FAL

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atrdriver said:
Lets say, though, you are flying along VFR at 4500 feet, in class E airspace, enjoying the day, not talking to anyone when a jumper descends directly in front of you. There is nothing that you can do to avoid hitting him, and you do, killing him. You land ASAP and report what happened. Should you be prosecuted for that? If the jump zone wasn't NOTAM'd? You are not required to be talking to anyone, and seeing a jumper from a moving airplane isn't that easy a thing to do.

If you fly over an airport that is marked with the little parachuting device next to it on the sectional and you hit a skydiver and survive to land your plane, regardless of radio communication with the jump pilot or ATC, what do you think the jury is going to believe when they are prosecuting you?

If you are flying along and hit a skydiver and the jump was being performed without a notam being placed in the system, which probably means there was no radio communication made...what do you think the jury is going to believe when they are prosecuting the jump pilot?

When you plan a flight, you're supposed to draw a line on that chart and look at all the airspace and hazards to flight that will affect you. On an IFR flight plan, ATC will separate you from jump aircraft that are operating at a DZ or per a filed notam, the same will happen if you're getting vfr flight following. However, keep in mind that even IFR aircraft are not guaranteed separation from non participating aircraft in VMC conditions.

So if some drop zone is doing a bandit jump over some farmers ranch for a wedding and they didn't file a notam and don't call anybody on the radio, they be the negligent ones.

If you fly over an airport that has been a host for skydiving operations for 15 years and is plainly marked as such on a sectional and reduntantly so in the Airport Facility Directory...and you hit a skydiver, good luck. Unless you have a cvr, it's going to be real hard to prove who said what on the CTAF. And if you were not with center or approach or at least monitoring, you'll miss that tid bit of information.

Keep in mind, your transponder on and operating properly, means that most the time jump aircraft are advised of your position. Most of the time. Also keep in mind, just because ATC tells us that your location is 4 miles south of the airport northbound, that we will be able to find you in the big sky.

I think you had the right idea when you asked the question...What will get me in trouble with the criminal justice system, if there's an accident or an incident?

Follow the intent of the AIM, adhere strictly to the FARS, abide by your POH, know where you are going and what you're flying over or through, use good operating procedures, follow your renter's agreement or your flying club by-laws and don't do anything that would make a reasonable and prudent person say WTF?
 
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airspeed

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Avbug, you have the mentality of a two year old. You speak as if you have so much knowledge but your words come out as if your in kindergarden. You obviously didn't understand the meaning of my post. I did not have the full story on what happened in Deland. But I also disagree with what you said. First of all to me it is pointless to have a FAR that covers careless flying AND a state statue that does the same. IMHO that is overprosecution. And your analogy to Nascar is so stupid. Again, read my post. Putting a gun to a drivers head had nothing to do with what I said. Sure if the pilot at Deland was doing something stupid like that I agree he should be charged. And yes you do put your life at risk by jumping out of an airplane DUH! Same as base jumping, ice climbing, etc. Playing golf is not ask risky wouldn't you agree?? If you follow news outside of your little world you would know about the Falcon in Greece a few years ago that had an upset in flight and some pax died, some VIP pax and the pilots were charged, or like the JAL MD-11 Captain who had a a/p problem and a F/A died and he was charged. I can see the same thing happening here in the states and that was my point!
 

FN FAL

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Metro752 said:
Charging this guy with manslaughter is so stupid.
I don't think I was advocating that that's what should be done. Scroll back and read the piece I posted on "overcriminalizaiton".

In the case of the jump pilot who collided with the jumper, charging him criminally with state charges IS redundant.

One...the FAA probably will revoke, suspend or at least put a nasty-gram in the pilots record. A career stunting punitive judgement for sure.

Two...the widow or the estate will sue for wrongful death, dohhh! The widow or the estate will be made whole by a judgement in court. What else do you need? This will be the ass burner!

Three...was there a rip in the fabric of society when the jump pilot collided with the jumper? Hmmmm, that's the 56,000 dollar question. Because that's the reason the state legislation passed the law...they feel that the moral fabric of society has been damaged and it must be repaired by processing this case through the criminal justice system. It's that simple.
 

FN FAL

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Lrjtcaptain

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As a fellow skydiver and as a fellow part time jump pilot I have to say this. And if someone said it already sorry, don't have time to read the entire thread. What the F...... was that pilot doing over over the landing area and or dropzone and at the same altitude as his jumpers. When I dumped a load, i would break away from the dropzone and wouldn't begin my descent for at least 5 seconds. AT jumpers pull altitude I made sure I was at least a half mile away from them while under canopy because there is no reason whatso ever to be near them. Now its fun to beat jumpers down and it isn't even that hard to do but what happend here didn't need to happen. Ive seen a video of my friend jump out of the porter and 10 seconds after the jump the porter goes right below them and comes withing 100 feet of them. That is carless and reckless in my opinion.
 

avbug

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I agree, Lrjtcptn. Airspeed apparently didn't read the part where I noted I was at DeLand, on a skydive, on the birthday of the DZO, on his birthday end of the day load, when the jump airplane did a low pass directly beneath me as I was landing my parachute canopy, at that drop zone, in the same place that Wing was killed. I thought it was a stupid thing to do then, I think it was a stupid thing now. I had some very sober thoughts of kicking the pilots butt.

Having hit and killed someone, the pilot deserves more than a butt kicking. Much more.

Administrative penalties do not equal careless and reckless operation that leads to a death. Certainly the FAA will have their pound of flesh, and certainly certificate suspension or revocation is in order. I can't imagine anything less than certificate revocation, but it's not my call. It's also very much dependent upon the pilots attitude and the results of whatever investigative work takes place. That much is obvious.

However, the FAA does not speak for any other branch of the government. The FAA is not pursuing criminal charges, in this case. The FAA is acting within the agencies discretion to act administratively. Other charges are being brought for other laws violated by an entirely different legal system.

Fn fal thinks it's okay that the pilot receives civil penalties in a law suit with the estate of the dead jumper, and it's okay that the FAA acts...but not okay if criminal law has effect. I don't understand that mentality...three different, separate, areas of law, each with their own effect. Yet a pilot who violates law and results in the death of another person through an intentional reckless act of neglect, should go scott free under the criminal justice system. How utterly ridiculous.

Perhaps if I shoot into a crowded schoolyard from an airplane, I'm doing the right thing, because my wheels aren't touching the ground. In that case, the FAA should go after me for 91.13, careless and reckless operation, posing a hazard to persons or property on the surface...after all, I wasn't paying as much attention to flying the airplane as I should. And the families of the deceased children should sue me for all I'm worth...that's okay. It's their right. But the people, who have criminal laws regarding homicide and manslaughter, have no redress, because after all, the air is the FAA's jurisdiction, and there is no "FAR" regarding murdering people with an airplane...in no wise should I ever be prosecuted criminally, right?

Now airspeed thinks jumpes are risking their lives...we all stand a high probability of dying when we go out the door on a skydive. The statistics say he's not telling the truth, but what do statistics know? What do experienced jumpes know? What on earth has that to do with a jumper who is killed by a reckless pilot who is operating unsafely? Never the less, let's go with it. Jumpers are going to die anyway, so it's okay to kill them by hitting them with airplanes. That's Airspeed's premise, so we'll just fiat that in...for airspeed who likes to talk in childish terms such as "doh" we'll note that fiat means we just accept his premise.

So here we are, accepting the fact that skydivers know they'll likely die when they jump, and accepting the fact that skydivers will probably die when we jump. This being the case, then nobody should have any problem with shooting them in freefall. No problem. Perhaps poisoning the sandwiches at the local Drop Zone cafe. Swapping parachutes for laundry. After all, it's free entertainment. Those jumpers are engaging in an activity that will probably kill them...why not help them along. We're not hurting anything? So they get killed...it's not like they were doing something SAFE after all, is it? Kill them all, let whatever god they believe in, choose among them. Right, airspeed?

It's okay. It's okay for us to shoot them, poison them, sabotage a jump (right?)...danger is danger, and what could possibly be more dangerous than jumping out of a perfectly good airplane, right? Except. No. We can't go there. It wouldn't be right. Except....no, we've established that it's perfectly okay to kill skydivers. Except, well, except possibly hitting them with an airplane in freefall or under canopy. There, we said it. We addressed reality again. Hitting the skydiver while he prepares to land the airplane, under a good, functioning, proven, professionally designed and built, TSO'd (by the FAA, incidentally) ram air parachute canopy. Hmmm.

Skydiving is dangerous? No, not really. Unprotected sex, now that's dangerous. Mexican bullfighting, that's dangerous (not the pansy spanish kind). Taunting your mother in law. That's dangerous. Parking at the local walmart after sunset. That's dangerous. Driving to work on any given day. That's dangerous. Eating uncooked sea food. That's dangerous. But skydiving? Using one's body as a flying surface against adequate relative wind, while monitoring one or two calibrated altimeters, backed up by a computerized altitude monitoring device that will mechanically and explosively deploy a second, emergency, certificated, recently inspected and professionally packed reserve parachute (cypress), to descend to a preselected altitude which is announed by an electronic monitor alarm behind one ear, where one deploys a scientifically designed and very tested and very proven parachute assembly, and then flies and descends under a large airfoil to a touchdown that's often light as a feather, softer than any airplane lands....that's dangerous? How about let's hear from a real skydiver...one of many of us here who do have a leg to stand on...who can answer from experience? It's not dangerous.

Even if skydiving were dangerous, does that in any way, shape or form justify homicide of any kind? If it does, then logic must prevail. Logic dictates that if it's okay to kill a skydiver because he engages in a dangerous act, then it's okay to kill others who engage in dangerous acts. Four boxers have died in the ring in Las Vegas this year. That's dangerous. It's probably perfectly acceptable to swing from the ceiling on a long rope and strike one in the head with one's feet...it's fun, it's wholesome, and the boxer is probably going to get killed anyway. Just like the skydiver. Or that pesky NASCAR driver. Hard to argue that their life isn't dangerous. If it's not the inevitable spin-outs and crashes that happen at every race, they risk beign mobbed to death by fans. Why not just ram into one, push him into the wall, kill the driver? He knew it was a dangerous thing when he entered the track...he took the risk knowingly. Killing him is okay, therefore. Best of all, NASCAR has rules abut that. The driver that does the killing will get a sanction. After suffering a setback like that, the driver that does the killing does NOT deserve to be prosecuted criminally, right? After all, NASCAR had their pound of flesh.

With logic like this, next time the chicken coop burns down, we'll dehorn all the cows. It makes as much sense.
 
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