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  • #10000

    I recently had the pleasure of flying Funston and learning how their club does business. They have a very different approach mainly because they fly from a National Park and must comply with not just USHPA policies, but NPS as well. While it will be difficult to replicate their model for our site, I think some of their procedures could be helpful to us.

    First, no one flies without a site brief from one of the club mentors. Not just any other pilot, but a designated mentor. There are dozens of mentors and I had contact with at least three of them – all were very helpful and generous with their time.

    Second, no one flies without completing a non-club member application. This application contains the usual personal information plus a signature line acknowledging the pilot has read and will comply with the club’s rules which are conveniently posted on their website. There is no membership fee at Funston but they do ask for a donation to help support the club.

    Third, no one flies at Funston without a helmet sticker. This might be the most useful part of their site rules as it clearly identifies someone who has complied with all the above.

    I recognize our situation is different, but the idea of designated mentors and helmet stickers is possible for us and could help identify new persons or even persons not qualified (either by rating or noncompliance with CSS or USHPA rules) to fly AJX.

    I’m sure this will generate discussion so let’s hear from you and make something happen to improve the way we fly at AJX

     

    #10001
    John Benario
    General Member

    Essentially the same as at Lookout Mt.

    Lookout isn’t Park Service, it is private, so the owner can set the rules.  You pay for a year’s membership, you get a sticker which goes on the rear keel.  Visiting pilots get a different color sticker after they pay for the day/week/month pass.

    When you pay for your pass you sign that you have read the rules, etc. You break the rules, you lose your flying privileges.

    The problem with that plan at AJX is, Lookout has a full time staffed office at launch where you pay for your sticker.  There is no office or person in charge who is available at AJX to get the sticker from for visiting pilots, and, no ability to ensure that the rules are followed.

     

     

    #10002

    Yep – those are all great ideas, but likely would not work at AJX (just from a logistical/practical standpoint). For example, we discussed the sticker idea a while back, but a few things that might stand in the way of that working:

    • Pilots not wanting to put stickers on their gear
    • Someone would need to be on-hand to distribute them
    • The stickers would have to be purchased, printed out, and kept on hand somewhere accessible
    • Enforcement – a person would need to be on-hand to check

    I had sent USHPA/RRG a request/suggestion through their local representation to find a way to push the message (maybe through USHPA instructors, publications like their magazine, etc) of the importance of doing some homework before flying a new site (reading site briefings) and not flying before an in-person site briefing. Maybe if there are others here that would request the same, that this issue would get some traction. Seems like a great article topic for USHPA mag.

    #10005

    We already recommend that all visiting pilots get a site briefing before flying. Any pilot who cares about his/her safety should know that site briefings by local pilots are extremely invaluable.

    Many local pilots are very happy to offer that info if asked, and we have a few instructors (HG and PG) who would be glad to offer good info, as long as they know ahead of time that you’re showing up. Schedule a site briefing either with them, or reach out to locals via this forum, or post about your planned visit on the facebook group here: Marshall/Crestline Free Flight Page

    Nobody should be flying and landing at AJX without purchasing at least a limited CSS membership (which forces you to sign our waiver), and of course everyone landing at AJX is required to have a current USHPA membership.

    The sticker idea,… it’s not a bad one, but it’s a bit tougher to distribute and enforce without someone being on site all day every day to make sure that people get their stickers and sign the waiver right away.

    What if the pilot switches helmets, or borrows someone else’s helmet for the day? It would appear as though they did what they were supposed to do before flying, but maybe someone tried to save them $20.00 by loaning them theirs. Do we need to get different color stickers for the limited memberships depending on the month? Using one color all year long might make it appear as though they’re current. I suppose the expiration date could be written onto the sticker after purchase.

    It seems like we already have a lot of these rules in place, it’s just that people have to be willing to understand why they’re there, and try to follow them for the good of the community as a whole.

    #10011

    There is no perfect system and those bent on ignoring the rules and doing there own thing surely will. Funston doesn’t have a full time staff and yet they’re able to effectively police their site. Why? Because they have a system and a club membership willing to ask questions and enforce the rules. Why should we be different?

    Stickers aren’t a perfect solution, but they could help. They would at least help identify persons who aren’t members or may not be familiar with AJX. True they may not prove a current membership, but if there were two kinds, annual stickers and temporary ones, you could at least distinguish between the two and ask a question. Few of us like to play cop, but if the alternative is accidents and loss of our flying site, we might just pony up.

    I don’t believe a site brief by a local pilot hanging around the LZ is a guarantee of a good briefing. The site brief should be done by a mentor. Not necessarily an instructor (though all instructors should be mentors) but an experienced local pilot who’s received some instruction on how to give a brief. I would guess there are several dozen persons who could serve in this capacity. A list of mentors should be listed on our club’s website. The briefing should also be free of charge so as to provide no obstacle to anyone needing a briefing. Stickers and a log book could be kept on site with access granted to all mentors. It just doesn’t seem that hard to me.

    I feel like I’m preaching to the choir here as its the same motivated folks who respond.  Though it’s not a particularly supportive choir as I hear a mostly negative tune. Of course there will be violations, and yes it will cost a few bucks, and it will absolutely be a challenge to get it going, but come on… we got a problem here. Let’s do something!

    #10012

    Site briefings are free no matter who you talk to. I don’t think instructors charge for that. They only charge for a visiting P2 sign-off, because it requires them to watch the visiting P2 pilot fly 5 times at minimum, which can take all day due to the longer commute to any of our launches. If anyone needs a list of qualified people they can contact or meet with for a site briefing, it can be found right here: Instruction & Training

    If you just show up on a random day at a random time to the LZ, you’ll have to call someone anyway, and a “mentor” will have to either do it over the phone, or drive out to meet with you if they’re not already there, because most people commute to AJX (sometimes as much as an hour or more).

    There are at least two or three instructors nearby at all flyable times, because they’re out there for their students anyhow. You’re more likely to get one of them to show up, and they’re the most qualified about giving flying advice at our site. It just makes sense.

    I’m not opposed to stickers if most people think it will solve some problems, it’s better than nothing, but again,… who can we trust to hand them out to every visitor? If we could pay someone to sit there at least a few hours a day every flyable day, it would be easier.

    A physical log book on site might also be nice, though we kind of have that on this website. Everyone who flies must purchase at least a limited membership, which then makes their names and ratings appear on the “Member Directory” page. Any CSS member has access to this list of people, though stickers are certainly an easier way to figure out if someone signed the waiver or not.

    We’re always looking for volunteers to make our site better, so if anyone would like to volunteer themselves to make some of these things happen, raise your hand. 🙂

     

    #10013
    Bo Frazier
    General Member

    Jana, can you point me to the rule that requires a visiting P2 pilot to be observed a minimum of 5 times by a local instructor before they can receive a sign off to fly without supervision?  I tried to find that but couldn’t but my wife says that I can never find anything.  Thank you for your assistance with this.

    #10014

    CSS has sound policies and rules in place. CSS has a beautiful website with tons of necessary and helpful information. CSS has an on-site display clearly depicting our rules, landing pattern and membership requirements. CSS has many superbly qualified instructors and many experienced pilots willing to share their knowledge. You would think with all these resources there would be few problems, yet this does not appear to be the case. It’s time we give serious consideration and effort to implementing changes that will make a difference.

    We don’t like rules. No one does. They hinder our freedom. But what must be realized, is that true freedom is first grounded in discipline.

    #10016

    We have laws against murder, theft, DUI, polluting, and general abuse. We even pay billions of dollars to people every year to do nothing other than enforce the laws and punish the perpetrators for breaking these laws, and yet we still can’t get our s**t together. 😄

    We’re trying to make it easier for everyone to follow the rules by informing them of what they are and explaining to them why they are in place. We have pros willing to answer any AJX-related questions for free either over the phone, via e-mail, or in-person. Now we just have to be decent enough to understand, respect and follow those rules.

    If the majority of you believe that stickers will solve some of these problems, like I said… I’m not opposed to them. I’m just trying to figure out how to distribute them to visitors on the spot on random days & time, when none of the board members are there to do it. General members would be easier to take care of, because they can pick up their stickers at any time during their year at AJX.

    #10018

    Bo, here are three versions of the P2 sign-off with the relevant lines highlighted in the first image:
    5669C3A9-48DF-49B2-A571-502ED5379F0E
    369C9D01-46A2-4589-9A8D-B8B7644078C2
    Here’s a screenshot of the sign-off from the old CSS website:
    19F629FE-6787-4E39-B2C3-988B4E447BD1

    #10022

    The variations in the sign offs is new to me, so we’re working with the local instructors to figure out what the best approach is in regards to how P2s are evaluated as good-to-go unsupervised (i.e., if there is a flight # requirement, how many if there is, etc).

    Really though, the important part of all of this is that the local instructors are the best people to be making those determinations, as they are intimately familiar with the site and make their living by teaching and evaluating new pilots. We will work to get the “letter of the law” ironed out with them so that there is no ambiguity on those requirements.

    #10025
    Bo Frazier
    General Member

    Thank you for that information Jana.  I see now why I couldn’t find it.

    In another thread on this site, I suggested that restrictions on P2 pilots should be relaxed.  My suggestion has not been met with much support but I remain convinced that the current requirements are too strict.  USHPA has long established requirements for obtaining a P2 rating and any pilot who shows up at AJX with a P2 rating must be presumed to have satisfied all of the requirements for obtaining that rating from a USHPA certified instructor.  They have logged at least 35 flights in which they demonstrated an appropriate landing approach.  They have demonstrated five landings within 25 feet of a target.  There are, of course, many other requirements that have been satisfied by the pilot to obtain the rating.  I fully understand that these are fairly minimal requirements.  But many P2 pilots have done far more than satisfy these minimal requirements.  Many P2 pilots have flown quite a bit and have gained substantial skills including solid thermalling skills.  So we shouldn’t set the standards for flying at AJX based on the lowest possible skill levels of a P2 pilot.  This brings my arguments for changing the rules directly into the concerns raised in this thread.  When a P2 shows up at AJX, the pilot absolutely needs to have a discussion with an appropriate person regarding the pilot’s ability to safely fly at AJX.  But under the current rules, that person must be a local instructor and that often is not practical and it is expensive, sometimes prohibitively so.  I have read multiple comments here that instructors possess superior skills to assess newer pilots’ skill levels and abilities to safely fly the site.  I strongly disagree with that position.  Instructors certainly are highly qualified for that role.  But there are many pilots who are not instructors who have hundreds, or even thousands, of hours flying our sites.  In 2019, I logged 150 hours of airtime on my paragliders at Marshall, Crestline and Regionals, flying mid-day and evening flights.  I spent about 20 hours on my hang gliders.  I have been flying those sites for more than 20 years.  In the past I have been certified to teach hang gliding and paragliding and served as an Observer under USHPA rules.  I no longer am an instructor.  So I am not sure why I would not be sufficiently qualified to determine whether a P2 pilot can safely fly our sites without supervision.  There are many other local pilots who have the same or more experience as I have.  So I simply don’t see why the club will not allow such pilots to serve as “mentors” or whatever you want to call them to assist P2 pilots in being able to fly.  Instructors are often too busy to be available.  I know of one instructor who will not do sign offs for non students so that shrinks the number of available instructors even more.  It is just my strong opinion that qualified non instructors should be able to work with P2 pilots and sign them off.  The club needs to consider this and address how to determine which pilots are qualified for this role.

    I also strongly disagree that there should be a requirement of 5 flights from our sites before a P2 can be signed off to fly without supervision.  This goes back to my earlier statements regarding the greatly varied experience level of P2 pilots.  If a P2 has extensive mountain flying experience and thermal flying, and demonstrates that skill in one or two flights from Marshall, it is simply ridiculous to require the pilot to have 5 supervised flights.  Of course, a brand new P2 without mountain experience may need many more supervised flights.  Each case must be decided by the supervising instructor or mentor.  One size never fits all.

    I agree with everyone who has mentioned how “spicy” our sites can be in summer conditions.  I have many mid day summer hours on hang gliders and paragliders on our sites and have experienced the good, bad and ugly of those conditions.  So most P2s should be very limited to flying anything other than early and late.  But as strong as our mid day conditions are, our sites offer nearly perfect opportunities for new pilots who fly early and late.  The risks during such hours are about as minimal as you can get for our sport.  I have flown around the US and around the world and I often tell AJX pilots who fly mainly locally that they just can’t appreciate how wonderful the sites at AJX are.  Each launch is excellent, not filled with rocks, cactus, cliffs, etc., etc.  The LZ is covered in grass and slopes uphill and has an overshoot LZ below it.  It doesn’t get much better than that.  At the end of each day, you can almost be your last dollar on having smooth winds in the LZ from the south, southwest, or west.  There are some obstacles not far from the LZ but in smooth early and late air, they pose minimal risks to a qualified P2 pilot.  There are few, if any, other sites in the US with such conditions on such a consistent basis.    So I think that P2 pilots who have worked hard and earned that rating should be allowed to fly unsupervised during early morning and late day hours.  Alternatively, maybe they should be allowed to do so with only one supervised flights.  But requiring 5 supervised flights before allowing them to gain experience in launching, flying and landing is not necessary.

    David, you said that the instructors will get together and decide what should be required for supervision of P2s before sign off.  I disagree that our rules should be set by instructors alone.  This is a membership organization and all members who so desire should be involved in any such decisions.  Rules are easier to accept when they are voted on by members.

    So those are some of my thoughts.  None of this really has much of an impact on my life.  I live in Albuquerque but own a cabin in Crestline so I come out about one week every 4 to 6 weeks to get some serious airtime.  I can fly our sites anytime I want since I have been actively flying since 1980 and have advanced ratings in PG and HG.  I have no financial interest in any of this. But I have never forgotten the excitement of getting started in flying hang gliders first and paragliders later while also remembering the frustrations associated with advancing my skills.  AJX offers nearly perfect facilities for helping new pilots advance safely and without so much frustration.  Non local pilots should be encouraged to come and utilize our sites for that purpose.  I am confident that all of this can be done without any lack of safety or risk to our pilots or sites.  I also am absolutely willing to help P2 pilots or any other pilots who need some assistance or mentoring.  My only goal has always been for every flight for every pilot to result in a fun, safe flight.  But sometimes rules that are too restrictive can actually lead to other outcomes.  Let’s not let that happen.

    #10026

    Bo,

    I appreciate your position, and willingness to help out inexperienced pilots, but the incident rate at our site (including pilots of many different levels) would suggest that relaxing the current protocols any more is asking for trouble. Since volunteering for the board, I can’t recall a single 2 week stretch without hearing about something.

    I want the instructors to agree on terms for the site sign offs because they are the ones that are going to be issuing them. The terms in the sign off are a bare minimum for the club to get behind, and they should be encouraged to add their own standards on top of that, since they are allowing those novice pilots to fly without supervision.

    I just don’t see how the site would survive if any pilot could show up and put novices into the air. There would be absolutely no enforceable standard that we could maintain.

    This is, at the end of the day, a P3 site. I considered it a privilege to fly here as a P2 on my own and jumping through the necessary hoops is just part of the gig – we have to do that with the other aspects of our flying (getting rated, maintaining our ushpa membership, repacking our reserves, etc), and following a few safety protocols to fly an intermediate site is no different. P2 flying options down here in San Diego are not great, but that didn’t mean I ran out to Blossom as a beginner just to get flights in since I could have.

    Ultimately the end result, if we can’t all play by the rules, is that we’re going to get told new rules. That’s going to mean no unsupervised P2 flying at all, and I think that would suck.

    #10027

    “Thank you for that information Jana.  I see now why I couldn’t find it. In another thread on this site, I suggested that restrictions on P2 pilots should be relaxed.  My suggestion has not been met with much support but I remain convinced that the current requirements are too strict.”

    No problem. We’ll be discussing the current requirements with all of our local instructors and once they’ve come to an agreement on what’s best for both the site and visiting P2 pilot safety, we’ll update the website with new info.

    “USHPA has long established requirements for obtaining a P2 rating and any pilot who shows up at AJX with a P2 rating must be presumed to have satisfied all of the requirements for obtaining that rating from a USHPA certified instructor.  They have logged at least 35 flights in which they demonstrated an appropriate landing approach.  They have demonstrated five landings within 25 feet of a target.  There are, of course, many other requirements that have been satisfied by the pilot to obtain the rating.”

    You’re right that USHPA has certain requirements for obtaining a P2. They’ve recently made their requirements even more strict, requiring more flights and flying days, and have also updated the P2 written exam.

    The problem is that many instructors around the country are far too lenient when giving out P2 ratings. We’ve had new P2 pilots visit our site in hopes of getting signed off to fly, but when they try to demonstrate their kiting, launching and landing skills, many of them are absolutely awful at it. I’ve witnessed this myself and often wonder how in the world they got signed off to fly solo. For this reason it is imperative that we have our own local instructors evaluate a visiting P2’s skills, because we seem to have higher standards.

    Compared to other sites, ours is especially thermic most of the year and can prove difficult for some pilots. We have to make sure that we vet every visiting P2 pilot before we set him free. Our local P2s had the pleasure of learning all about the dangers of this site from day one, had proper training and were under instructor supervision for all 35 flights. Visiting P2 pilots are completely unfamiliar in comparison. Some learned to fly at the beach with steady winds and flew off a training hill 35 times. This is not going to prepare them for desert mountain flying.

    I fully understand that these are fairly minimal requirements.  But many P2 pilots have done far more than satisfy these minimal requirements.  Many P2 pilots have flown quite a bit and have gained substantial skills including solid thermalling skills.  So we shouldn’t set the standards for flying at AJX based on the lowest possible skill levels of a P2 pilot.

    Some visiting P2 pilots do have lots of practice, good skills & instincts, and that will be quickly apparent after they demonstrate them to a local instructor. We can’t simply assume that they’re good to go, we have to make sure for all of our sake.

    This brings my arguments for changing the rules directly into the concerns raised in this thread.  When a P2 shows up at AJX, the pilot absolutely needs to have a discussion with an appropriate person regarding the pilot’s ability to safely fly at AJX.  But under the current rules, that person must be a local instructor and that often is not practical and it is expensive, sometimes prohibitively so.

    We are extremely lucky to have good instructors with higher standards at AJX, compared to other flying sites. This is a difficult and dangerous site not suited to beginners without supervision. Who is better qualified than a local instructor? They are knowledgeable about the site, they have taught thousands of students on-site, and they are covered by insurance if anything goes wrong. They have to spend time with a new pilot. They’re paying for insurance, for rides, for other paperwork, and of course they need to be compensated for their time like anyone else doing their job. This is an extreme sport after all, and we can’t have random pilots taking on such a responsibility.

    I have read multiple comments here that instructors possess superior skills to assess newer pilots’ skill levels and abilities to safely fly the site.  I strongly disagree with that position.  Instructors certainly are highly qualified for that role. But there are many pilots who are not instructors who have hundreds, or even thousands, of hours flying our sites.

    Indeed you do not have to be an instructor to be an excellent and highly experienced pilot. However, liability for our site is a huge concern. Just because someone is an experienced and excellent pilot, does not make him the best option for mentoring. Will he or she take full responsibility for someone’s life or injuries, if the new pilot crashes during a mentor-supervised flight? Will the mentor pay for damages to property, if the new pilot crashes under his/her watch? Our instructors are not only very knowledgeable and experienced pilots who are intimately familiar with our site, they are also covered by PASA insurance. It’s a MUST at AJX if you want to teach here.

    In 2019, I logged 150 hours of airtime on my paragliders at Marshall, Crestline and Regionals, flying mid-day and evening flights.  I spent about 20 hours on my hang gliders.  I have been flying those sites for more than 20 years.  In the past I have been certified to teach hang gliding and paragliding and served as an Observer under USHPA rules.  I no longer am an instructor.  So I am not sure why I would not be sufficiently qualified to determine whether a P2 pilot can safely fly our sites without supervision. There are many other local pilots who have the same or more experience as I have. So I simply don’t see why the club will not allow such pilots to serve as “mentors” or whatever you want to call them to assist P2 pilots in being able to fly.

    It’s pretty simple. No matter how much experience you have, you are not covered by insurance to teach or mentor new pilots at AJX (if they have not yet been signed off to fly there). If you’d like to come out of retirement and obtain PASA insurance in order to be able to teach here, it’s something to consider. Otherwise we should leave it to current local instructors to make these decisions. When they make a mistake, their livelihood is at stake. If the person you are mentoring makes a mistake under your watch, you’re probably not going to want to pay $15,000 for a downed power line, or worse, when he/she crashes into it.

    Instructors are often too busy to be available.  I know of one instructor who will not do sign offs for non students so that shrinks the number of available instructors even more.

    (I suspect) the reason this instructor has chosen not to do any sign-offs, is because he’s well aware that other instructors around the country have much lower standards, and he’ll have to spend a lot of time with the visiting P2 to get him/her up to acceptable safety standards. He’d rather not deal with that headache, and I can understand this.

    Other instructors will do sign-offs, but one must plan ahead of time. If you know you’ll be visiting soon, make an appointment. You could show up and be lucky enough to get some time on the spot, but instructors often try to pair students based on their stages of learning.

    It is just my strong opinion that qualified non instructors should be able to work with P2 pilots and sign them off.  The club needs to consider this and address how to determine which pilots are qualified for this role.

    Who determines who’s “qualified” and who isn’t? It is my strong opinion that there is just too much liability involved to put something like that to work, as far as site sign-offs are concerned. Once the pilot is signed off by an insured local instructor, you can mentor him/her to your heart’s content. 😉😄

    I also strongly disagree that there should be a requirement of 5 flights from our sites before a P2 can be signed off to fly without supervision. This goes back to my earlier statements regarding the greatly varied experience level of P2 pilots.  If a P2 has extensive mountain flying experience and thermal flying, and demonstrates that skill in one or two flights from Marshall, it is simply ridiculous to require the pilot to have 5 supervised flights. Of course, a brand new P2 without mountain experience may need many more supervised flights.  Each case must be decided by the supervising instructor or mentor. One size never fits all.”

    We will discuss this with all of our instructors, and we may leave it up to them to decide how many supervised flights a visiting P2 pilot requires before they are signed off to fly our site. They might come up with a set number, or maybe it will be at their own personal discretion. Some visitors are more skilled than others, and that might become apparent sooner than five flights. We’ll let everyone know what the consensus is, once it is reached.

    I agree with everyone who has mentioned how “spicy” our sites can be in summer conditions. I have many mid day summer hours on hang gliders and paragliders on our sites and have experienced the good, bad and ugly of those conditions. So most P2s should be very limited to flying anything other than early and late.”

    That is exactly why we can’t trust just any P2 visitor to go straight up to launch.

    “But as strong as our mid day conditions are, our sites offer nearly perfect opportunities for new pilots who fly early and late. The risks during such hours are about as minimal as you can get for our sport.”

    That’s not always true. I’ve had some kooky flights late in the evening. I’ve also driven down from launch late afternoon/close to sunset due to very gusty conditions that never let up, while a few others launched into them. It really depends on the weather and season.

    “I have flown around the US and around the world and I often tell AJX pilots who fly mainly locally that they just can’t appreciate how wonderful the sites at AJX are. Each launch is excellent, not filled with rocks, cactus, cliffs, etc., etc. The LZ is covered in grass and slopes uphill and has an overshoot LZ below it. It doesn’t get much better than that.”

    That’s exactly why we need to protect AJX from mishaps and why we need to vet new pilots! It’s such a great place to fly with such an amazing (albeit nutty) community. It would be awful if we had to shut it down due to too many accidents and chaos. This is why it’s so important to discuss, respect and follow the rules. We have to police ourselves to keep it alive as long as possible.

    “At the end of each day, you can almost bet your last dollar on having smooth winds in the LZ from the south, southwest, or west. There are some obstacles not far from the LZ but in smooth early and late air, they pose minimal risks to a qualified P2 pilot.”

    -Qualified- key word. We need someone knowledgeable to assess their skills first. Can’t just take their word for it, because there are a surprising number of pilots who grossly overstate their flying skills! 😂

    David, you said that the instructors will get together and decide what should be required for supervision of P2s before sign off. I disagree that our rules should be set by instructors alone. This is a membership organization and all members who so desire should be involved in any such decisions. Rules are easier to accept when they are voted on by members.

    If you don’t trust the local instructors to make the right decisions, the very people who’s jobs and livelihood depend on producing quality pilots with minimal incidents, who can you trust? Most of the pilots who fly at AJX have been taught by said instructors!

    So those are some of my thoughts. None of this really has much of an impact on my life. I live in Albuquerque but own a cabin in Crestline so I come out about one week every 4 to 6 weeks to get some serious airtime. I can fly our sites anytime I want since I have been actively flying since 1980 and have advanced ratings in PG and HG. I have no financial interest in any of this. But I have never forgotten the excitement of getting started in flying hang gliders first and paragliders later while also remembering the frustrations associated with advancing my skills. AJX offers nearly perfect facilities for helping new pilots advance safely and without so much frustration. Non local pilots should be encouraged to come and utilize our sites for that purpose.”

    Non-local pilots are encouraged to come fly our site if that’s what they want. We love getting visitors, but we want to make sure that everyone is safe in the air. We want to know who we are flying with and that they know our rules. Not only that, we want to prevent unnecessary accidents. We just had a visiting pilot absolutely wreck himself. It’s a miracle that he’s still breathing. That’s what we’re trying to stop from happening. Our site is amazing, but also with a LOT of dangers.

    “I am confident that all of this can be done without any lack of safety or risk to our pilots or sites.  I also am absolutely willing to help P2 pilots or any other pilots who need some assistance or mentoring. My only goal has always been for every flight for every pilot to result in a fun, safe flight. But sometimes rules that are too restrictive can actually lead to other outcomes. Let’s not let that happen.”

    Some people think the rules are restrictive, and others think they’re just right. We have to protect ourselves, our visitors, and our flying site. We have USHPA to answer to these days and our continued existence depends on them being able to insure us. It shouldn’t be hard to understand.

    Anyone who doesn’t want to spend the extra $$ to get signed off to fly at AJX, can in the meantime fly a P2 site elsewhere until they have enough flights, hours and experience to earn their P3. At that point they are able to fly our site unrestricted.

    #10032
    Bo Frazier
    General Member

    David, do you by chance have a breakdown as to how many of those incidents were caused by visiting pilots versus local pilots?  Local may be hard to define but I think you could do so by limiting local to pilots whose primary site is at AJX.

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