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HomeAircraftHelicopterMain Discussion › Can having minors dropped off at the field by a parent pose a liability problem for clubs?
03-04-2008 01:49 AM  10 years agoPost 41

rrKey Veteran

M ca usa

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Where I fly there is a kid, probably 12 or 13, his mom drops him off and he fly's. He's more compotent than many of the older guys, and he also has better manners
Ther are a lot of kids like that and its great but the problems is what if he got hurt there is a liability issues there that can come back on the club and anyone rendering aid. It is sad that people have to feel that way but look around and you will see why it is that way people will sue a person at the drop of a hat. sad as it is even the good ones if they are under age can not be left at our fields here unatended. if a parent goes to do that they are told either they stay or the kid has to leave too just becasue of the liability issues.

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03-04-2008 02:39 AM  10 years agoPost 42

rrKey Veteran


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We are in a little different situation because the field I mostly fly at is public property. As far as I know, I have no right to tell the kid anything. I started flying rc when I was a kid myself, but when I flew at a club field, I was always flying with another adult member acting as my gaurdian.

Kids can drive a car without an adult at 16, but in that case it is the adults car and they are paying the insurance. At the very least I would think the parent should have to sign some sort of waiver. Even then it is no guarantee. I like to see kids fly, but I fall on the side of the fence that says the parents should be there.

I love this hobby, and I like to see kids involved with it, but I would never turn my own kids loose at a flying field. I've seen too many bad things happen over the years, including a guy that was killed by a 60 size plane and another almost killed by a 60 size helicopter. I think if I was put in a situation where a kid needed medical attention I would get it for him. If his parents then sued me over it I would counter sue them for the pain and emotional distress they caused me because they put me in a situation where I needed act because they were too stupid to keep watch of their own kid. Plenty of kids get hurt riding their bikes. I have not heard of someone trying to help them beign sued, but with all the sleezeball lawyers we have, It would not suprise me either.


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03-04-2008 04:52 AM  10 years agoPost 43



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Wow, some thread we have going here! Let's see, we collectively hate PITAS, brats, kids, parents, plankers, coggers, dogs and, of couse, sleezeball lawyers. Kind of makes me ashamed to be a member of RR and the RC community in general.

I learned to fly aircraft many years ago with my dad. I was 11 years old at the time. Although I never went to that field without dad, I was never treated as a PITA by the kind and mentoring members of this particular northern New Jersey RC club. I have no doubt that without my father's presence, I would still have been a welcomed junior member. We were all bonded by the fellowship we shared in all things RC.

Back then people took personal responsibility for their actions - good and bad. A parent would never drop off an unruly kid at the local flying field - at least not more than once, if you know what I mean. My how things have changed.

We do see more and more irresponsible visitors and club members these days. I would never consider it good etiquette to bring an unleashed dog to the field. Yet it is all too common at my club's field. Spectators routinely appear in the pilot areas, although we have bleachers for them to sit on.

When something goes awry, all too often the person responsible for causing the bad situation wants to blame someone else. In the case of a minor getting injured, the kid's responsibility absconding parents typically want to blame the club or a specific member. These parents clearly lack a sense of personal responsibility.

RC clubs do need clear rules regarding minors and animals for legal protection if nothing else. Minors should be required to have their parents or guardian sign a waiver/hold harmless agreement before given membership. All adult members should be required to sign the same agreement. It doesn't matter if the club charter has rules of conduct/safety. How is a judge or jury going to know if the member read and understood them. Finally, spectators and members should be held acountable to follow the rules. Unenforced rules are worse than no rules at at. Can you say negligence, maybe even criminal negligence.

Minor members are a must if our hobby is to continue in future generations. One of the things I like about helis versus airplanes is that helis attract younger members. I suspect our hobby would perish if not for the interest in helis by the young. Let's treat these younger versions of ourselves with kindness and teach them well. We were all 11 years old once.

03-04-2008 06:49 AM  10 years agoPost 44
Shoego Heli


San Diego, CA, USA

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I have read the responses on this topic and it does indicate to me that our club should address the situation more on a legal basic, rather than on one grounded on current feelings of minors.

I don't know any lawyers and I don't wish to pay for one's advice, so like this forum, I looked up some forums on free legal advice. I have tried the one that was listed near the top of my search, registered and posted this same question in their forum. I hope that this post gets some good, concrete answers on how we should deal with this situation.

I hope I picked a good law forum!

Having my heli: Cool, Having a working heli: Awesome, Having a day to fly: PRICELESS!

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HomeAircraftHelicopterMain Discussion › Can having minors dropped off at the field by a parent pose a liability problem for clubs?
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