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  #1  
Old 06-04-2013, 03:12 PM
RonH RonH is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Yuma, Az
Posts: 87
Angry Once Again..."STAY AWAY FROM THE AEROSTAT!"

I'll start this with an apology up front, but please bear with me while I rant a bit:

Do you wish to remain alive? How about your passengers? Maybe your loved ones...they'd probably like to see you on this earth a while longer. Well, if you do, and if you come down to Key West, then STAY OUT OF R-2916!!!!!

Let me tell you a story of what happened an hour ago, and maybe everyone will be able to understand my frustration and dismay. We got a small break in the weather (right now, small breaks is all we're getting, so we'll take 'em). I made the decision that we'd go out and fly the aerostat and try to get our customers some data while we could...EZPZ. So, out to the pad we go, get set up, come off the tower, begin outhauling, when one of my crew members shouts over the radio, "Airspace Violation!!!" I turned and looked up just in time to see a single engine aircraft banking left (he was on a direct path towards us) and setting a course towards Key West. Folks, this aircraft missed us by approximately 1000 ft horizontally, and no more than 1000 ft vertically. Guess what? Not only would he have killed all aboard his aircraft, but in this case, the full launch crew (including myself) were directly under the aerostat (it was at 500 ft and outhauling) and would have stood a very good chance of being severely injured or killed by falling debris.

To sum it all up, here's the deal...if you hit the aerostat, you will die, and all aboard will as well. If you hit the tether that holds the aerostat, you will die and all aboard will as well. If you hit either the aerostat or the tether, you have put many innocent folks on the ground in harms way. If you simply violate the airspace around Cudjoe Key, we will get your tail number and do everything we can to have the FAA have a chat with you (as we did in this case and with all others).

I wish I could say I'm overreacting to this incident, but I'm not. This is truly a life and death situation. I was on shift when the 182 was brought down after he hit our tether. I never, ever wish to witness anything like that again. I also don't wish to leave my 3 year old son fatherless due to a lack of judgment on someone else's part. This is all very avoidable; stay South of US1 all the way down to Key West and you will clear us. Simple, huh? That's why it makes me so crazy every time another aircraft violates the airspace...it is that simple.

Now, here's an offer I will make to anyone who's flying down here...get in touch with me. I will let you on site...I will give you a tour...I'll even give you a piece of the tether that the aerostat flies off of. It will possibly open some eyes as to what goes on here.

Hopefully, I haven't offended anyone, but if I have, I can't apologize for that. I'd rather have you offended and alive, than happy and dead.
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Ron Hasenbeck
Yuma, Az
RV-14 Wannabe

=VAF= Dues Paid October 2018
EAA 1109496

Last edited by RonH : 06-04-2013 at 04:14 PM.
  #2  
Old 06-04-2013, 03:36 PM
Sid Lambert Sid Lambert is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: North Atlanta
Posts: 1,120
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I learned 4 new words in that rant. Thank you.
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  #3  
Old 06-04-2013, 04:10 PM
gasman gasman is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Sonoma County
Posts: 3,903
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Aerostat......... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerostat

Crash........ http://planecrashmap.com/plane/fl/N422G
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  #4  
Old 06-04-2013, 04:46 PM
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N546RV N546RV is offline
 
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Location: Brookshire, TX
Posts: 1,065
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This was one of the reasons we went to MTH instead of EYW on our Keys trip a couple years ago. Even though it's relatively simple to avoid the thing, it's even easier to just stay to the east.
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  #5  
Old 06-04-2013, 05:23 PM
mtnflyer mtnflyer is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: granby co
Posts: 180
Default Fat Albert

Good rant Ron,,,,, you people out there, listen to this guy, your not going to cut that tether line and it will ruin your whole day.
  #6  
Old 06-04-2013, 05:38 PM
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SilverEagle2 SilverEagle2 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: West Jordan, Utah
Posts: 228
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I second Ron having spent MANY hours flying purposely around his project out here.

IF, not when, you see the tether, it would likely be too late.

The airspace out here is pretty big, and dedicated to the UTTR, but we still see instances of curiosity where lives are at risk.

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  #7  
Old 06-04-2013, 05:38 PM
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ChiefPilot ChiefPilot is offline
 
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Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 1,576
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  #8  
Old 06-04-2013, 06:24 PM
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Snowflake Snowflake is offline
 
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Location: Sidney, BC, Canada
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Doug really needs to code up a "Like" button for VAF... Like on Facebook...
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Rob Prior
1996 RV-6 "Tweety" C-FRBP (formerly N196RV)
  #9  
Old 06-04-2013, 07:36 PM
RonH RonH is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Yuma, Az
Posts: 87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefPilot View Post


Ok...I had to laugh at that... But, it's true...mad, frustrated, concerned. These incidences seem to be happening quite a bit more often lately. I really and truly don't want to see anyone lose their life over this.
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Ron Hasenbeck
Yuma, Az
RV-14 Wannabe

=VAF= Dues Paid October 2018
EAA 1109496
  #10  
Old 06-04-2013, 07:39 PM
RonH RonH is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Yuma, Az
Posts: 87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnflyer View Post
Good rant Ron,,,,, you people out there, listen to this guy, your not going to cut that tether line and it will ruin your whole day.
Said the man who took the tour. Good to hear from you, Dave!
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Ron Hasenbeck
Yuma, Az
RV-14 Wannabe

=VAF= Dues Paid October 2018
EAA 1109496
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