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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby wingspan33 » Sat Oct 01, 2016 2:48 pm

To all interested -

The above "exemption letter" from the FAA addresses an extension of ASC's original exemption. What I'd like to see (and have looked around for over an hour yesterday) is the original request for exemption that ASC submitted to the FAA. That would have more details about how ASC intends to implement and administer the tandem "ratings" it issues.

The above letter from the FAA does define the exemption as being ". . . for the purpose of sport and recreation.". So ASC did not gain permission for some new type of tandem exemption that might include commercial tandem operations.

So, it seems hard for me to believe that Air California Adventures Inc. can honestly operate the way they have without being seen as COMMERCIAL Joy/Thrill Ride providers. But then, that could probably be said of many outfits around the country that offer tandem HG and/or PG "training" flights. But technically (or practically?) speaking, Air California Adventures Inc. is in violation of the FAA's sport and recreation limitations (as with young children and adults who show no ability to, or interest in, pursuing a "real" rating). And as others have said, particularly when the percentage of "tandem students" that go on to get Novice, then Intermediate (or higher) pilot ratings is so incredibly low.

But then it's also odd how telling a passenger a few things about how to fly an HG or PG is "good enough" to make a tandem ride a valid instructional sport/recreational flight.
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sat Oct 01, 2016 4:11 pm

USHPA's cancellation notice included 4 items. The most important for the FAA is this one:

USHPA wrote:ACA is conducting tandem flights that do not comply with all of the operating conditions of FAA Exemption 4721 issued to USHPA for tandem instructional flights.


It doesn't seem to me that switching their operations to the Aero Sports exemption is going to get around that problem.

I wonder how long USHPA has known that Air California Adventure was operating outside of their operating conditions?

Anyone want to guess that it's been a lot longer than 2015 or 2016?

I'd bet the practice goes all the way back to David Jebb's original lease in ... 1998.    :shock:

That would be a nice question for someone to ask Mark Forbes:

Hi Mark, How long has USHPA known that ACA was operating outside of the USHPA tandem exemption? How long have you known that Mark?

Also, if you did know, then what did USHPA do and when did you do it? And if you didn't know, then how can you be considered to be effectively managing the exemption that the FAA has entrusted to you?


I'd sure like to hear how the slick Mark Forbes would answer those questions!!!      ;)
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Red » Sat Oct 01, 2016 6:33 pm

Bob Kuczewski wrote:I've been swamped with phone calls this evening. During my last conversation, a bunch of new posts were put up on hanggliding.org. Red is a good man, but he may not have known that there were other sources of FAA tandem exemptions when he wrote this. So his statement that "Without the USHPA exemption, tandem ultralight flight (anywhere in the USA) is illegal at the federal level" is mistaken.
Bob,

You're too kind. :thumbup:
Google has set me straight; I found there are now at least three 103 exemptions.
It does not seem too difficult to get others, either. I just never thought to investigate, before.
Cheers,
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sun Oct 02, 2016 12:45 am

Red wrote:Bob,
  ...
You're too kind. :thumbup:


Red,

It's not possible to be too kind to you my friend.    :salute:

The site you've maintained to help people in the sport is legendary:

    https://user.xmission.com/~red/

It's an honor to swap posts with you, and one of the few things I miss about "Jack's living room".    :roll:

USHPA has had 99% of our sport believing that they were the only source of a tandem exemption. It makes me wonder how many other things they're conveniently not telling us (like recreational use statutes).

We are at an important time in the history of hang gliding. The choices we make now will have lasting consequences for our sport. Let's work together to get it right!!!!
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby JoeF » Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:18 am

Some quote clips are from:
http://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/Advisory_Circular/AC%20105-2D.pdf

How does skydiving tandem realm mesh with all this? Skydiving mechanically is a free-flight kiting/hung-mass gliding mode. The sport of skydiving uses a low-mass wing held by multiple tethers in the involved tether set of the kite system. Skydiving action is being seriously planned for combination with kited aerotecture. Is there an FAA exemption path for skydiving tandem? Could ACA just consider their tandem PG/HG activity as sky diving flying? Spaceship Earth? Sport parachuting safety has received significant attention by FAA. "The FAA’s primary responsibility with respect to skydiving is the protection of air traffic and persons and property on the ground. This is principally accomplished through part 105."

"Part 105, Parachute Operations. This part is especially important to parachutists, to
parachute riggers, and to the pilots who fly parachutists, since it contains regulations governing
intentional parachute jumping. "

"Technical Standard Order (TSO)-C23, Personnel Parachutes Assemblies. The
TSO-C23 series contains the minimum performance and safety requirements for parachutes.
New approved parachutes must be designed and tested to the current TSO standards. Parachutes
approved under earlier TSO standards may continue to be produced. The most current TSO-C23
document may be obtained from the FAA Web site, [url=http:/www.faa.gov]www.faa.gov[/url]. "

) The FAA requires that all tandem parachutes have an AAD installed on the
reserve parachute. Industry associations, such as the USPA, require their affiliated skydiving
schools and clubs to provide and/or require the use of an AAD for all student or unlicensed
skydivers.
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Rick Masters » Wed Oct 12, 2016 2:15 pm

Image
The United States Parachuting Association advises pulling the main at 2000 feet so there will be time to cutaway and deploy the emergency reserve if something goes wrong.
An AAD serves some purpose in the event of incapacitation of the tandem master at 2000 feet and 120 mph.
However, in the circumstance above, it is necessary to forgo any second chance, in order to pop off a tight series of $150 tandem paragliding flights with children.

Image

I am disgusted, frightened and disturbed by this.
I want no part of it.
It is not hang gliding.
Irresponsible parachuting has nothing to do with my sport.
And my sport should defend itself against irresponsible parachuting - not ally itself with it.
The USHPA, their board and membership, are a total disgrace.
Their inability to act decisively and correctly, in a timely manner, is shameful.
But a whole lot of so-called hang glider pilots seem to regard irresponsible parachuting as okay and a part of hang gliding,
Real hang glider pilots need to distance themselves from these people and this kind of activity.
Quickly.

- Form a national hang gliding association that does not endanger children for profit -

Image
ps: If you have used the acronym "PDMC" you can add a star at
http://acronymsandslang.com/definition/926150/PDMC-meaning.html
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:34 am

Rick Masters wrote:The United States Parachuting Association advises pulling the main at 2000 feet so there will be time to cutaway and deploy the emergency reserve if something goes wrong.


Your implication is clear. At their altitude (well within the PDMC) there would have been no time to deploy a parachute if any of those stunts went awry.
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:35 am

On hanggliding.org flysurfski posted this quote:

flysurfski wrote:
In light of the Hamby video, USHPA had no choice but to pull Max Marien's tandem rating.

Robin Marien (Torrey concessionaire) certainly didn't like seeing his son Max on the sidelines and so he purchased tandem exemptions through AeroSports.

USHPA has viewed their tandem exemption as their own little monopoly, and they're furious about Robin Marien going around them.

So while USHPA had known of Torrey's non-FAA-compliant tandem operations for over a decade (who sold Marien all those U$HPA 30 day memberships for all those years?), they only decided to drop the hammer when Robin Marien snubbed his nose at USHPA's monopoly.


Mark Forbes (aka mgforbes / MGF) quoted that section and replied with this:

Mark Forbes wrote:I don't know who's spinning these fake stories, but this is false.

What is "false"?    What part is false Mark?

Is it false that USHPA pulled Max Marien's rating after discovering the Hamby video? Was his rating ever pulled or reduced subsequent to that event or not? If so, what was the reason? And if not ... why not???

If Max Marien's rating was pulled, is it false that his father Robin Marien certainly didn't like it? Is it false that Robin Marien purchased tandem exemptions through AeroSports? How does the timing of those two events correlate?

Is it false that USHPA was furious about Robin Marien using an alternate tandem exemption (getting around USHPA's long held tandem monopoly)?

Is it false that USHPA has known of the tandem violations at Torrey for a long time? How many USHPA Directors have visited Torrey Pines in the last decade? Didn't any of them notice the thriving tandem joy ride business on open display there? If USHPA didn't know about this for 10 years, isn't that an indictment of USHPA's own incompetence?

Mark Forbes concludes with this:

Mark Forbes wrote:Both Max and Robin are current USHPA tandem instructors.


That's straight out of Clinton's "what the meaning of 'is' is" speech. The question isn't whether they ARE current USHPA tandem instructors. The question is: Did USHPA pull Max Marien's tandem rating due to the Hamby video and did that motivate Robin Marien to get his tandem exemptions from AeroSports? Mark Forbes never refuted any of the individual facts, yet he just comes out and says it's "false" (in the safety and comfort of "Jack's living room").

This is one of the best insights into the sneaky and deceptive nature of "mgforbes" that I've seen in a public forum (I've seen much worse in person). For reference, here's the full post where you'll see him artfully dodging all of the key issues in this important matter:

mgforbes wrote:Joined: 28 Feb 2007
Posts: 822
Location: Corvallis, Oregon
Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 10:36 pm
Post subject: Reply with quote #20


I don't know who's spinning these fake stories, but this is false.

ACA has stated that they no longer intend to sign up students as USHPA 30-day members. It is required that they do so to use the USHPA tandem exemption, according to the terms laid out by FAA. They are not authorized to use our exemption unless they comply with its terms. At present they choose not to, so we have notified them and the membership generally that they are not authorized to use our exemption. Is that clear enough for you?

ASC also has an exemption. It does not require membership in ASC. If ACA chooses to operate under that exemption's terms, then that's their prerogative. They are not insured by us, and they have some insurance/bond arrangement with their landowner. We have not determined how we may handle these sorts of situation moving forward. That will be a topic of discussion at the BOD meeting later this month.

Both Max and Robin are current USHPA tandem instructors.

MGF

Notice how Mark Forbes (usually the stickler for details) never addressed any of the individual statements that he claims are "false". This is why USHPA has lost its insurance and its good will with many of its members.
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby Rick Masters » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:17 pm

After reading the October 13 posts on OZ Report, I can only confirm we are witnessing the disintegration of the USHPA.
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Re: USHPA Revokes Tandem Exemption from Air California Adven

Postby wingspan33 » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:32 pm

Bob,

Earlier today Mr Forbes relayed that Max Marien never lost his PG tandem rating.
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