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KPDX area and 4th of july fireworks & flying



 
 
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  #1  
Old June 17th 04, 10:48 PM
NW_PILOT
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Default KPDX area and 4th of july fireworks & flying

Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.


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  #2  
Old June 17th 04, 11:27 PM
gatt
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"NW_PILOT" wrote in message news:JPOdnc18SokTjE_dRVn-

Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX

area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine

is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.


Call 1-800-WXBRIEF and check the security information. Lima was current as
of last week and talks about closures over open assemblies of people
numbering greater than something like 30,000 people, blahblahblah, which
will most likely be relevant.

What with all the GA traffic flying into crowds and whatnot, I'm sure glad
our tax money is financing this crap.
-c


  #3  
Old June 18th 04, 05:00 AM
Marty
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"NW_PILOT" wrote in message
...
Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX

area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine

is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.



NW,

In most cases the Display Operator contacts the controlling facility and
works out any details during the permit application process.
In the case of a display being conducted within an airports' controlled
airspace, The operator contacts the control tower just prior to the
beginning of the show and after the conclusion. It is up to the controlling
facility whether the airport is closed, traffic rerouted, or no change of
operation. That decision is based on weather, the proximity of the display
site and the location of the display site in regards to runway
approaches/departures in use.

Many displays are conducted on the city airport property and are closed when
the fireworks arrive on field. NOTAMs would be put out in this case.

I have done several displays at Kemper arena in downtown Kansas City and
worked with the KC Downtown tower many times and we handled traffic
differently at different times but never closed the airport. Usually it was
up to me to stop the display if a plane was on approach. The ultimate
authority/responsibility is on the shoulders of the Display Operator.

So, if your buddy gets to close to the display, the show will be halted till
he leaves. It is that simple. I have had to stop a number of them for this
reason. The issue of being to low over an open assembly of people is someone
else's problem.

IMHO, an airplane is about the worst place to watch and take pictures of
fireworks, the effects are generally washed out by the contrasting city
lights. Most fireworks only go a few hundred feet.

OTOH, it is neat to go up and watch all the displays going on in the
distance but you might be disappointed with any photos you take. Been there.

The biggest concern to me would be how many other folks are flying and
watching fireworks ;-)

Marty



  #4  
Old June 18th 04, 08:50 PM
Steven P. McNicoll
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Default


"Marty" wrote in message
...

In most cases the Display Operator contacts the controlling facility and
works out any details during the permit application process.
In the case of a display being conducted within an airports' controlled
airspace, The operator contacts the control tower just prior to the
beginning of the show and after the conclusion. It is up to the

controlling
facility whether the airport is closed, traffic rerouted, or no change of
operation. That decision is based on weather, the proximity of the display
site and the location of the display site in regards to runway
approaches/departures in use.

Many displays are conducted on the city airport property and are closed

when
the fireworks arrive on field. NOTAMs would be put out in this case.

I have done several displays at Kemper arena in downtown Kansas City and
worked with the KC Downtown tower many times and we handled traffic
differently at different times but never closed the airport. Usually it

was
up to me to stop the display if a plane was on approach. The ultimate
authority/responsibility is on the shoulders of the Display Operator.

So, if your buddy gets to close to the display, the show will be halted

till
he leaves. It is that simple. I have had to stop a number of them for this
reason. The issue of being to low over an open assembly of people is

someone
else's problem.

IMHO, an airplane is about the worst place to watch and take pictures of
fireworks, the effects are generally washed out by the contrasting city
lights. Most fireworks only go a few hundred feet.

OTOH, it is neat to go up and watch all the displays going on in the
distance but you might be disappointed with any photos you take. Been

there.

The biggest concern to me would be how many other folks are flying and
watching fireworks ;-)


I live in De Pere, Wisconsin, a nice little city that holds an annual
festival over Memorial Day weekend. Part of the celebration is a fireworks
display at a large municipal park on the river that splits the city. I am
an air traffic controller, the park is in a Class C surface area, and I was
working the night of the fireworks display. A small airplane departed the
airport on a sightseeing flight shortly before the fireworks began, he was
going to watch the display from a vantage point right over the park, which
is about 3.4 miles from the airport. A short time after the display began I
received a phone call from the Brown County Sheriff. They had received a
call from the De Pere Police Department who wanted to know if I was
communicating with an airplane that was circling over the fireworks display.
I told them I was, and then they told me that I was to ORDER the airplane
out of the area. I replied that the De Pere Police Department had no
jurisdiction over any airspace, and suggested that if they believed the
fireworks display posed a hazard to air navigation they should halt the
fireworks activity. I also told them I would relay the REQUEST of the De
Pere Police Department to the pilot. I did so, and the pilot elected to
return to the airport.

Now I knew about the upcoming fireworks display because I am a De Pere
resident, but nobody else in the facility did. Class C airspace extends to
the surface within a five mile radius of the airport, the fireworks display
was well within that area, and there was no notification given to the air
traffic control facility prior to the display. I would think that some type
of notification/approval would be required when this type of activity is
conducted near an airport. Since the federal government regulates airspace,
I'd expect it to be a federal requirement.

I did a text search of the FARs, the word "firework" appears only in Part
101, and only once:

Sec. 101.1 Applicability.

(a) This part prescribes rules governing the operation in the United
States, of the following:

(1) Except as provided for in Sec. 101.7, any balloon that is moored
to the surface of the earth or an object thereon and that has a diameter of
more than 6 feet or a gas capacity of more than 115 cubic feet.

(2) Except as provided for in Sec. 101.7, any kite that weighs more
than 5 pounds and is intended to be flown at the end of a rope or cable.

(3) Any unmanned rocket except:

(i) Aerial firework displays; and,

(ii) Model rockets:

(a) Using not more than four ounces of propellant;

(b) Using a slow-burning propellant;

(c) Made of paper, wood, or breakable plastic, containing no
substantial metal parts and weighing not more than 16 ounces, including the
propellant; and

(d) Operated in a manner that does not create a hazard to persons,
property, or other aircraft.

(4) Except as provided for in Sec. 101.7, any unmanned free balloon
that--

(i) Carries a payload package that weighs more than four pounds and
has a weight/size ratio of more than three ounces per square inch on any
surface of the package, determined by dividing the total weight in ounces of
the payload package by the area in square inches of its smallest surface;

(ii) Carries a payload package that weighs more than six pounds;

(iii) Carries a payload, of two or more packages, that weighs more
than 12 pounds; or

(iv) Uses a rope or other device for suspension of the payload that
requires an impact force of more than 50 pounds to separate the suspended
payload from the balloon.

(b) For the purposes of this part, a "gyroglider" attached to a vehicle
on the surface of the earth is considered to be a kite.


  #5  
Old June 19th 04, 03:56 AM
Teacherjh
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IMHO, an airplane is about the worst place to watch and take pictures of
fireworks, the effects are generally washed out by the contrasting city
lights. Most fireworks only go a few hundred feet.


Fireworks (those that make up a typical municipal display) go almost a thousand
feet up, and their burst is a few hundred feet big. They may be more
impressive when viewed from the ground, right under them, but when seen from a
moving airplane the sense of the three-dimensional shape of the burst is
unequalled. (The airplane is moving, and the change in perspective as the
burst occurs really brings out the form)

Done both, including flying over the Macy's display in NYC some years back.

Jose



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(for Email, make the obvious changes in my address)
  #6  
Old June 19th 04, 04:33 AM
Marty
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Default


"Steven P. McNicoll" wrote in message
ink.net...

"Marty" wrote in message
...

In most cases the Display Operator contacts the controlling facility and
works out any details during the permit application process.
In the case of a display being conducted within an airports' controlled
airspace, The operator contacts the control tower just prior to the
beginning of the show and after the conclusion. It is up to the

controlling
facility whether the airport is closed, traffic rerouted, or no change

of
operation. That decision is based on weather, the proximity of the

display
site and the location of the display site in regards to runway
approaches/departures in use.

Many displays are conducted on the city airport property and are closed

when
the fireworks arrive on field. NOTAMs would be put out in this case.

I have done several displays at Kemper arena in downtown Kansas City and
worked with the KC Downtown tower many times and we handled traffic
differently at different times but never closed the airport. Usually it

was
up to me to stop the display if a plane was on approach. The ultimate
authority/responsibility is on the shoulders of the Display Operator.

So, if your buddy gets to close to the display, the show will be halted

till
he leaves. It is that simple. I have had to stop a number of them for

this
reason.


I live in De Pere, Wisconsin, a nice little city that holds an annual
festival over Memorial Day weekend. Part of the celebration is a

fireworks
display at a large municipal park on the river that splits the city. I am
an air traffic controller, the park is in a Class C surface area, and I

was
working the night of the fireworks display. A small airplane departed the
airport on a sightseeing flight shortly before the fireworks began, he was
going to watch the display from a vantage point right over the park, which
is about 3.4 miles from the airport. A short time after the display began

I
received a phone call from the Brown County Sheriff. They had received a
call from the De Pere Police Department who wanted to know if I was
communicating with an airplane that was circling over the fireworks

display.
I told them I was, and then they told me that I was to ORDER the airplane
out of the area. I replied that the De Pere Police Department had no
jurisdiction over any airspace, and suggested that if they believed the
fireworks display posed a hazard to air navigation they should halt the
fireworks activity. I also told them I would relay the REQUEST of the De
Pere Police Department to the pilot. I did so, and the pilot elected to
return to the airport.

Now I knew about the upcoming fireworks display because I am a De Pere
resident, but nobody else in the facility did. Class C airspace extends

to
the surface within a five mile radius of the airport, the fireworks

display
was well within that area, and there was no notification given to the air
traffic control facility prior to the display. I would think that some

type
of notification/approval would be required when this type of activity is
conducted near an airport. Since the federal government regulates

airspace,
I'd expect it to be a federal requirement.


Steve,

Your actions were spot on!
It is the responsibility of the display operator to halt the display if an
aircraft gets too close., PERIOD. It is not your problem, it is the
operators. Generally the authority having jurisdiction is the Fire
Department, not the police. The Fire Depts.authority is limited to code
compliance. The responsibility of safely discharging the display rests upon
the Lead Operator of the display and only him/her.

One suggestion, contact the local Fire Dept.and inform them that the airport
is to be contacted when they permit a fireworks display and that the Display
Operator is to contact the tower prior to and at the conclusion of the
display. They may want this in writing.

On one of those displays at Kemper Arena, I contacted the tower as usual.
The tower Mgr.told me to hold off a min.there is a problem. Within 30 secs.a
police helicopter flew into the area. There had been a shooting at a
"Haunted House"and they were searching for the culprits. In another 5
mins.we had Cops all around us because the culprits had fled to our area.
The show didn't go that night obviously and I called the tower to inform
them when the decision was made.

Another situation came up when I was to do a fireworks demonstration in
Wichita, KS. The Kansas Division Mgr. for our company made all the
arrangements. I was to conduct the demo.on Cessna property, namely the
employees recreation area. This is located next to the airstrip. Well, after
completing the setup I thought I would call the airport and tell them the
show was a go and they asked what show? I explained to them what was
happening. After the initial shock they began to ask the usual, can my
family come watch? is it open to the public?
The show went fine but after this problem and other problems with the
Mgr.,he was fed a plate of unemployment the next morning for breakfast.

Prudence dictates communication and cooperation IMHO. I'd be really ****ed
if some jerk started a (commercial) fireworks display in MY airspace without
notification!

Marty



  #7  
Old June 19th 04, 05:09 AM
Marty
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Default


"Teacherjh" wrote in message
...

IMHO, an airplane is about the worst place to watch and take pictures of
fireworks, the effects are generally washed out by the contrasting city
lights. Most fireworks only go a few hundred feet.


Fireworks (those that make up a typical municipal display) go almost a

thousand
feet up,


Few, not most.
Shells that reach close to 1/2 a mile are REALLY expensive and are used in
displays with big budgets $100,000 (like Macys), but it is not typical.
I'll concede that a show like Macys is definitely one worth a look-see from
the air! Maybe the Vancouver show has these, I don't know.

I wouldn't do that (Macys) display for all the tea in china. I respect and
applaud the guys and gals that endure the mental and physical strain that is
required by a display of that magnitude. Their work is fabulous.

Marty



  #8  
Old June 19th 04, 04:49 PM
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Default

I know you will need a permit from the airport manager to fly out of Pierson
field. I think if you don't turn north right away you would need to worry
about over flying all the people.

Your buddy will probably be pretty disappointed with the pictures too.

Paul D

"NW_PILOT" wrote in message
...
Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX

area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine

is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.








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  #9  
Old June 21st 04, 03:11 PM
SelwayKid
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"NW_PILOT" wrote in message ...
Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.

Hi
Seems to me you should go directly to the local source and ask instead
of the guesses you'll get in this forum. The one who mentioned the
Pierson Field permit is the only one who seems to have local info. I
remember the biggest display was there near Pierson or off a barge on
the river. Of course there are others all over the PDX area but there
is also the traffic going into KPDX.
Years back I did a circuit around Disneyland in Anaheim during the 4th
and there were more than 14 aircraft in orbit...some clockwise and
some counter. There was also one damned fool who was so low he nearly
got hit by some of the fireworks and did radical maneuvering to get
out of it. I told the boss that was the last time we did that one and
he agreed.
  #10  
Old March 17th 05, 06:43 AM
User
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Default

It's been a few years since I did this, but my personal experience is --

1) To observe the display from the air, contact Portland approch, they will
orbit you a safe distance from the display. If you use a telephoto, you
should get some good pix. You can also fly around other displays such as
Oaks Park and Washington County. Most of the displays don't go that high,
so unless you fly directly overhead you won't have a problem.

2) To fly into Pearson, the field was open for traffic until just before the
display. During the display, it was closed... After the display, it was
closed... until about 4AM, when the FAA personel finished walking the runway
from one end to the other looking for FOD or any other kind of debris. It
was sure a long night, it would have been quicker to drive and wait in the
traffic on I5 or I205.

I got to fly out after that, departing to the west over Vancouver lake and
turning south 'thru the gap'. No problem except for low scattered clouds,
darkness, and lack of sleep.

I would recommend flying into another WA field and catching a ride in with
friends.

N29531 Cardinal


SelwayKid wrote in message
. ..
"NW_PILOT" wrote in message

...
Anyone know what the rules are what restrictions there are in the KPDX

area
on the 4th of July evening? I know there is a large gathering of people

at
KVUO in Vancouver I cannot find anything in the NOTAMs. a friend of mine

is
wanting to go up that night and take photos of the fireworks from a
distance.

Hi
Seems to me you should go directly to the local source and ask instead
of the guesses you'll get in this forum. The one who mentioned the
Pierson Field permit is the only one who seems to have local info. I
remember the biggest display was there near Pierson or off a barge on
the river. Of course there are others all over the PDX area but there
is also the traffic going into KPDX.
Years back I did a circuit around Disneyland in Anaheim during the 4th
and there were more than 14 aircraft in orbit...some clockwise and
some counter. There was also one damned fool who was so low he nearly
got hit by some of the fireworks and did radical maneuvering to get
out of it. I told the boss that was the last time we did that one and
he agreed.



 




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