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HomeAircraftHelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › demo flight for kids summer day camp??
02-05-2008 03:20 AM  10 years agoPost 1
flyboy0413

rrApprentice

Brookfield, CT

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Last year, I was asked by a coworker, if I would be willing to do a heli demonstration for a bunch of summer campers. (2 of them were his sons). Not thinking too much about it, I agreed. Everything went smoothly and the kids (about 200 of them) enjoyed it.

Well, apparently his wife is the program director for this years summer camp, so he asked me again if I was willing to do the demo again. Even though last year's demonstration went fine, I am concerned what could happen if something were to go wrong. Say, equipment failure causing the heli to flying into a crowd of kids. Would I pretty much be screwed personally if their parent were to sue, or would something like my AMA insurance kick in? Being that I was invited by the summer camp, would they be liable?

Any thoughts would be appreciated!

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02-05-2008 03:25 AM  10 years agoPost 2
michael88997

rrElite Veteran

Lewisville,Tx

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get everybody that is going to attend to sign a waver or all the kids parents.. that would be the safest way, and get them to setup somekind of safety barrier in case something goes bad... they might have invited you but if something happens and you get sewed they could lie so waver would be best bet

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02-05-2008 03:27 AM  10 years agoPost 3
Ray Fernandez

rrElite Veteran

Guam (U.S.A.)

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I might be wrong but I do not think AMA will cover you should an "accident" occur, as the event needs to be sanctioned by AMA.....

Ray Fernandez - GUAM

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02-05-2008 03:35 AM  10 years agoPost 4
JAGNZ

rrProfessor

Auckland, New Zealand

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And doesn't the flying have to be done on an AMA field to be covered? I would probably do it but it IS a risk. I would have them way back from the field and a barrier is a good idea...


Jason Greenwood

www.3dheli.co.nz

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02-05-2008 03:36 AM  10 years agoPost 5
michael88997

rrElite Veteran

Lewisville,Tx

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as the event needs to be sanctioned by AMA.....
actually ama covers you anytime anywhere... it says so in the papers they send you with your card

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02-05-2008 04:00 AM  10 years agoPost 6
Havoc

rrElite Veteran

Ky.

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I was invited to do a demo for a school. The guy had a running joke that he'd bring an air show to the school so this was a way of pulling that off. I told the guy my flightline restrictions were, what the machine was capable of (as in risk), what failsafes I had in place and how I would fly to minimize risk (not toward spectators). I then flew for the guy at the location he wanted it at so he would know what he was asking for or if he wanted to change anything. They checked with their school officials and when everyone was on the same page, I flew. I also had a spotter.

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02-05-2008 04:19 AM  10 years agoPost 7
UH-60PILOT

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Seoul, South Korea

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By all means, do the demo, but be very careful! I was in Korea three years ago when a guy put on a demo with a 90 size machine. The demo took place in a school yard soccer field and was probably surrounded on all sides by buildings. The children were seated in bleachers. The pilot lost control of the helicopter and crashed into the crowd of children killing one little girl and seriously injuring another. After that all of the flying fields I use to fly at were closed. That's when I quit flying big nitros and started flying 450 size electrics so I could fly at any small open field.

I don't mean to scare you. Do the demo! This kind of thing is great for young people to see but make sure you are in complete control of your situation. Make sure you have some kind of barrier between your machine and the crowd or at least have a good stand off distance. Don't get crazy with the demo. Just keep it mild and they will get the biggest kick out of it and you will be comfortable doing it. Good Luck.

Kenny Thompson

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02-05-2008 04:20 AM  10 years agoPost 8
JAGNZ

rrProfessor

Auckland, New Zealand

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Man that is a SAD story.


Jason Greenwood

www.3dheli.co.nz

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02-05-2008 04:30 AM  10 years agoPost 9
dkshema

rrMaster

Cedar Rapids, IA

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AMA insurance will cover you no matter where you fly, as long as you adhere to the published safety code. IT will not cover third parties (site owners, sponsors, participants, spectators...) unless you operate the demonstration as an AMA sanctioned event.

There is no such thing as an "AMA sanctioned site". There are flying sites operated by clubs that have an AMA charter, and their insurance to the land owner and other pertinent parties is part of the chartering process. The AMA does not approve or "sanction" the site. A "sanction" is provided by the AMA upon request and the payment of appropriate fees, and is date/event specific. The purpose of a sanction is to "protect" your event date(s) from competing events within a reasonable radius, and to allow the people running the event to make sure that necessary parties are insured for the event.

As to liability, insurance or not, you are liable for whatever damages or injuries you cause, no matter WHAT the activity.

AMA liability insurance is SECONDARY insurance, that is, it pays AFTER your PRIMARY insurer either reaches its limit, or refuses to pay a claim. It's always been that way.

You can ask that the AMA sanction a demonstration by filling out the appropriate form(s) and paying the proper fees. A sanction application must be submitted by a current AMA Contest Director, and the Contest Director is the AMA representative for the event and is responsible for safe operation of the event. By sanctioning the event and paying the appropriate fees, the AMA in turn will provide liability insurance for the event sponsors.

If you need to provide insurance for the flying site owner, or additional parties, you fill out an application as part of the sanction request, and pay the appropriate fees (which look to be $20 for each additional insured party).

A demonstration is a Class D event, the sanction fee is $20, and if the sanction is requested by a non-AMA club, there is an additional $5 fee.
All AMA Sanctioned event sponsors are provided with comprehensive liability protection, when the operation of the model aircraft is in compliance with the AMA Safety Code. This coverage includes both model flying and non flying accidents which may involve participants, AMA officials and spectators. NO COVERAGE IS PROVIDED FOR ACCIDENTS INVOLVING THE USE OF FULL-SCALE AIRCRAFT (SUCH AS FOR MODEL SPOTTING FROM THE AIR OR DEMONSTRATIONS AT AIR SHOWS). Flying site owners can also be provided with liability protection as additional insured. However, this must be applied for by using the application form for insuring flying site owners. This form is furnished as part of the sanction kit.
Sanction requests must be submitted at least 30 days prior to the event, and I believe the deadline for demonstrations is 20 days minimum.

-----

Your proposed demonstration is quite a ways off. I'd suggest that you meet with the people who run the camp and discuss safety measures, your flight operations, and discuss liability questions. Perhaps THEIR insurance will cover your activities, or perhaps they can purchase a one-time rider for their policy to cover you. Find out ahead of time, and let them know safety is number one. Find a contest director who would be willing to submit the paperwork and be present the day of the demonstration.

Survey the site well ahead of time, make plans for where you will set up the flight line. The day of the demo, NO ONE (even as a one-man show) flies behind the flight line. Period.

Whatever you plan to do, do stuff that is well within your skill level, and resist the temptation to show off.

Planning will go a long way to making this demonstration successful and if you go about the preparation in a business-like manner, you may well be asked to participate in more of their activities throughout the year. A planned demonstration always goes off better than one where you just show up and fly.

-----
Dave

* Making the World Better -- One Helicopter at a time! *

Team Heliproz

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02-05-2008 04:53 AM  10 years agoPost 10
jschenck

rrProfessor

La Vista, NE.

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My 6th grade daughter participated in a two day extra curricular aviation 'HAL seminar' (H.A.L. = High Ability Learner, she's smart )

The teachers were doing a great job introducing the kids to some aviation academics but they had no exposure to aviation. My daughter told them about my hobby so the teacher asked if I come in and talk about my R/C hobby. I brought a Trex and a PulseXT. I gave a ~5 minute talk about how airplanes fly and demonstrated by moving the controls then "pressing" where the airflow would go causing the tail to move up/down/left/right and the wings to move. Then I talked for about 15 minutes on how a heli flies with it's rotating wings that change the angle of attack to create directional control. They were quite interested including the two teachers since they had no concept of how heli's are controlled.

I agreed to do a short demo flight with the Trex. Ok I wanted to do it but I felt safe doing this since it was a small group of kids and I could clearly define a flight line. They stayed on an elevated paved section and I stepped out into a field and flew the Trex. I did some simple flying around, slow flyby, fast flyby, a loop, roll, flip. I overheard one of the kids say to another kid "it even makes real helicopter sounds!" as the blades cavitated a bit on the rolls. Finished with a bit of inverted hovering. I did this for two groups of kids.

The teacher wants me to come back again next year, really thought it was good for the kids. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend demonstrating to kids whenever you can.

Also, our club does a similar demo for a summer youth camp where they'll bring out 20-30 kids for an evening of demo and buddy box flying on fixed wings. This is where I'll fly my Raptor and feel comfortable.

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02-05-2008 05:27 AM  10 years agoPost 11
JJMAN (RIP)

rrVeteran

Chesapeake, Virginia - USA

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By all means do the demo. It would be a great opportunity to possibly inspire a young future aviator or perhaps a future RC pilot, plus, they could learn a few things about safety also.

JAY HIGGS

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02-05-2008 12:54 PM  10 years agoPost 12
BarracudaHockey

rrMaster

Jacksonville FL

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AMA insurance will cover you no matter where you fly, as long as you adhere to the published safety code. IT will not cover third parties (site owners, sponsors, participants, spectators...) unless you operate the demonstration as an AMA sanctioned event.
Anywhere provided you comply with the safety code AND have permission of the site owner or controlling authority(parks dept, school principal or whatever)

Andy
AMA 77227
http://www.jaxrc.com

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02-05-2008 01:50 PM  10 years agoPost 13
flyboy0413

rrApprentice

Brookfield, CT

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wow.. a lot of feedback. thanks all.

I really enjoy flying in front of the kids, but in this sue happy world, I gotta worry about my family's financial future. If something were to happen, I'd be ruined. Obviously, I don't want that.

Last year, we had the kids sit along one edge of the field and I stood probably 50 feet in front of them, and never flew my heli closer than 30 feet in front of me. So, basically, I kept a minimum of about 80 feet between the kids and the heli.

We didn't do a safety net, due to the brevity of the demo (all of 20 minutes) and the fact that they didn't have one. Basically, I did the demo in my lunch hour (commuting included)

I didn't get a penny for any of this, but I really enjoyed seeing the kids faces after the demo. Most of them have never seen anything r/c, let alone a 3d heli.

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02-05-2008 02:54 PM  10 years agoPost 14
Dave M

rrApprentice

Mi.

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YOU should be covered under the camps liability coverage. They MUST have some kind of insurance.. but wise to check beforehand just in case.

If not then you should be able to get an event coverage policy for the day...and include that in the price for your airshow. If you just want to do the airshow out of the goodness of your heart.... make sure they have you covered. Should not be that big of a problem.

It's OK....It's not your fault !!!

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02-05-2008 02:55 PM  10 years agoPost 15
OK HELI

rrApprentice

Billings, Montana - USA

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if at all possible one of the best places to do a demo is at a big school with a baseball field. the crowd stands behind the chain link which is tipically 15-20 ft tall behind home plate and you stand on home plate and fly the field..if its a really nice field then you can put a piece of plywood down if your flying a nitro so you don't kill the grass or take off from pitchers mound..
its wide open and the kids are safe behind the fence..
just a thought for everyone.

Raptor 50 Titan with DX7, GY401, and TT Redline 53 is Awsome!

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02-05-2008 07:42 PM  10 years agoPost 16
flyboy0413

rrApprentice

Brookfield, CT

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I'm not getting paid a penny for this, in fact, I was pretty pissed, being that it was literally 100 degrees out and that I had given up my lunch hour to do this demo that my coworker didn't even offer me a bottle of water, let alone lunch.

The baseball diamond and fence is a great idea, though I'm not sure if they have it available in their area.

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02-05-2008 07:54 PM  10 years agoPost 17
BarracudaHockey

rrMaster

Jacksonville FL

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It sounds like you're doing what is reasonable to ensure the safety. And the big thing someone already mentioned, is to fly within your ability. To a group of kids flying around and some basic aerobatics will be as exciting as hard 3d, most of the general public just thinks the helicopter is out of control when someone is flying like that anyways.

Andy
AMA 77227
http://www.jaxrc.com

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02-05-2008 07:59 PM  10 years agoPost 18
JEEPWORLD2002

rrKey Veteran

BLUEBELL PA USA

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ama is last resort. they will make sure ur s or the property insu binder is used first and they will cover the remaining expense. so let say you hit ur own car what ever the car insu wont pay they will pick up.

Trex600n Trex500 Mikado LoGo5003d// Hacker, CastleCreations,Ys 50, JR 7703d/8900, Radix

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02-05-2008 10:19 PM  10 years agoPost 19
tlankford01

rrApprentice

Amarillo, TX 79110

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I think that most heli pilots can use reasonalble judgement to insure the safety of the crowd. I have never lost control to the point that at the very least I put the heli in the dirt. I have flown in parks schoolyards ymca and many other places. One can trust there machine and there equipment that others might be able to enjoy. If you are that worried about liablilty or your abilities to control the craft then you should not be flying at all much less for children.

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