Show helpers and pilots

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Peter Smedley
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Show helpers and pilots

Postby Peter Smedley » December 24th, 2018, 9:23 am

During the pilots briefings at Much Marcle this year the pilots were told that all helpers must be able to fly.

As my wife doesn’t fly, it came as a bit of a shock to us, and many thanks to one of the showline helpers that stood with me throughout the weekend.

We had read nothing of this change on the forums. Has there been an official rule change?

Merry Christmas to you all and a happy new year
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Rob Buckley
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 24th, 2018, 10:01 am

Peter,

It was in the summer Journal..

The LMA Committee has recently decided that any pilot’s helper must be an LMA member, must be competent to do the job, and ideally a competent pilot who could take over flying a model in case of an emergency.

The helper doesn't need to have a proficiency or be especially good at flying, but should be competent enough to be able to steer a model to safe crash site in case of pilot incapacitation.
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Peter Smedley
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Peter Smedley » December 24th, 2018, 11:25 am

I missed that in the journal. Thanks for the reply. The dear wife has now decided she needs to learn to fly!
Merry Christmas
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 24th, 2018, 1:51 pm

Win win then. Aye, happy brandybuttermas!
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Bob Thompson1894 » December 24th, 2018, 1:56 pm

Peter Smedley wrote:I missed that in the journal. Thanks for the reply. The dear wife has now decided she needs to learn to fly!
Merry Christmas
Oh do be careful. Look what happened 100,000 years ago when we taught them to talk! :lol:

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby John Evans » December 24th, 2018, 4:44 pm

very naïve explanation in my opinion Rob
Last edited by John Evans on December 24th, 2018, 4:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 24th, 2018, 4:59 pm

John Evans wrote:very naïve explanation in my opinion Rob


What should I have said then?
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Bob Thompson1894 » December 24th, 2018, 5:30 pm

I was under the (obviously false) impression that a helper had to be an LMA member with a proficiency to be ON the flight line, (or BMFA B cert) and had to be able to take over in the event of the pilot being compromised. I also thought this rule had been in place many years! There was an instance at Elvington many years ago which made it the rule that only insured members were airside of the fence. Have I got that wrong too?

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 24th, 2018, 6:05 pm

No, we recently made it a requirement that the helper was an LMA member, it wasn’t mandatory before. What is mandatory for next year is that everyone in the actual pilots box & startup box is a pilot, necessary helper or official. Casts of thousands, uninvolved family members and so on are right out in the engine running & flying areas.

Not everyone on the ‘live side’ of the fence has to be an LMA member, family members & friends are ok as long as they remain in the ‘pits’ area. They remain the responsibility of the pilot member they are with, and all must be ‘checked in’ & wearing a wristband.

And don't forget that saving the model is a nice to have, but of secondary importance to safety if the pilot becomes incapacitated for whatever reason.
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby John Evans » December 25th, 2018, 3:06 pm

That's better Rob The only thing I would apply to that statement was that the helper must be able to fly the same mode as the pilot

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 25th, 2018, 9:35 pm

That's covered under-

should be competent enough to be able to steer a model to safe crash site in case of pilot incapacitation.

As there's lots of variables (transmitter mode, transmitter tray, switches on the top of sticks, neck straps and so on) or combinations of variables, we're not going to make up rules on the details about how to do it. It's up to the pilot to have spoken to their helper before the flight about the specifics and any peculiarities of their setup, and what the outline plan might be if they at any point can't continue with the flight.

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Peter Smedley
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Peter Smedley » December 27th, 2018, 7:33 am

Boxing Day the “ better 3/4 “ joined the flying club. Had 3 flights.....so far....so still in one piece
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Bob Thompson1894 » December 27th, 2018, 8:50 am

My personal opinion of this is that the helper should not only be able to take over and 'crash safely', they should be aware of the main responsibilities of a helper, mostly as an extra pair of eyes. When I took my test (many years ago- thanks John Greenfield) the Ghost Squadron trick was played on me, as we were intently watching the model land, Al walked across the runway unseen causing us to abort. The lesson was that the helper does not watch the model, but the area around for dangers. Its a lesson I have never forgotten, but from seeing folk flying at shows with helpers oblivious to anything but the amazing flying of the pilot, it is a lesson all helpers should be taught. Look at what the pilot can not see.

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Dave Hayfield » December 27th, 2018, 4:44 pm

I've been 'doing' shows for as far back as I care to remember and have always been worried about people wandering onto the live areas of shows. Any person who is not involved in the flying of a model should not be 'airside'. Family members with their picnics,dogs and young children in pushchairs etc. have no business airside, if any person who is not actually flying or is not a necessary helper, spotter, erk or whatever should be aware that in the occurrence of a serious accident they would have a devil of a job explaining why they were in the vicinity of dangerous propellors, turbines with possibilities of rotor burst,fire etc. not to mention the close proximity of flying models. The rule is that spectators must be a laid down distance from the flying activity, solicitors would have a field day! Another problem is policing the access to live side. Wrist bands will identify valid entrants but to do this the access gates must be attended throughout the event, a soul destroying job but if serious NO ENTRY signs are in place and our officials on site enforce the removal of 'trespassers' people may get the message.The last thing we want is the Association being found negligible with a large fine attached. Just my opinion on the subject but in this era of litigation on anything that would benefit the lawyers, let us beware!
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Rob Buckley
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 27th, 2018, 8:27 pm

Yes, the job of the helper is to be additional eyes & ears for the pilot, t'was ever thus.

We have to take into account the type of event we’re running. We’re aiming for family friendly entertainment, both for the punters and the participants.

We are expecting people with families to come and fly, to provide the entertainment we’re selling. If their families are basically unwelcome, why would they continue to come? The family of a participating member will be made aware of the potential risks of the pits area, how to mitigate the risks and supervised by the member. That effectively reduces their risk to ‘no worse than’ a member of public in the crowd.

The visiting public can’t be expected to have the same awareness & supervision, so are kept apart from the pointy bits by minimum separation distance, judged to produce a reasonable level of safety.

I agree the entry to the live side needs to be properly controlled, a thankless task which also relies on all the participants playing the game, wearing a wristband and showing it for entry.

As with most things these days, it’s down to our risk assessments and doing what can be reasonably expected from us to keep attendees at our events safe.
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Bob Thompson1894 » December 28th, 2018, 8:25 am

Yes, agree Rob. My point is simply that a helper is not just there because the rules say so, they have a job to do and should be briefed on what that job is. In Peters case above, I presume that while teaching his good lady to fly, she will then be conversant with the duties of a helper. I wish some others would take notice!

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Alan Cantwell 1131 » December 28th, 2018, 5:26 pm

Just as a matter of interest, with an over 20 kg model, would the pilots helper have to go through the same tests with the over the limit model, as the pilot does?

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Rob Buckley » December 28th, 2018, 7:42 pm

The job of the helper and how to use and work with them appropriately is in the proficiency test for that very reason.

To fly an over 20kg model in public, yes. To take over in an emergency to steer the model towards a safe crash site, no, that's not going to have the boys round. It's again for the helper to be competent enough to be able to steer that type of model to safe crash site.

The majority of over 20Kg models only have one pilot on the exemption, so to expect every possible helper to be named to fly a an over 20kg model is impractical.
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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Alan Cantwell 1131 » December 28th, 2018, 8:01 pm

Ta Mr Buckley,

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Re: Show helpers and pilots

Postby Steve Perry » December 28th, 2018, 9:22 pm

For those with helpers that are not yet pilots, how about having 2 duty pilots ( a mode 1 and a mode 2 ) available at the pilots box ?

Lets say for example there are 20 Dawn Patrol in the air, is it really needed to have the 20 helpers ready to grab the TX rather than retreat to the pits area until retrieval time ?


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