AMA vs. FAA - Lawsuit Update

by FliteTest | September 17, 2014 | (12) Posted in News

As I'm sure you've already heard us say before (and if you haven't, Hi! Welcome to Flite Test!) the FAA has reinterpreted some of the rules from the 2012 statute regarding FPV and model avation.

Needless to say, these rules paralyze the hobby not only for us hobbyists, but for commercial use as well.  Enter Brendan Schulman.

On behalf of multiple organizations including the AMA, and FPV Manuals he is filing a lawsuit against the FAA.

We've discussed these topics before with Brendan in previous episodes. We had to have him back to help explain a little bit about what's going on and how it is progressing. 

If you would like to keep up with the process check out Brendan's Twitter Feed for constant updates on this case as well as other drone related news. 

If you still haven't made you voice heard, we strongly encourage you to comment at regarding this issue. The more people who speak up, the greater chance we have to fight this. 

We thank you for everything that you do for us here at Flite Test and for making this one of the greates hobbys in the world. It's up to us to keep it that way. 




Ano Pilot on September 17, 2014
Thanks for the pseudo-update, I was wondering why everything had gone so quiet. The more I think about it the worse it seems. Plus I was thinking, I don't understand how the Thermal-Soarers can afford to be phlegmatic because... won't they be horribly restricted as to flight height? surely they are far more of a probability-threat to civil aviation than the occasional 1 minute foray to altitude by a multi-rotor? Even the fixed-wing-beyond-line-of-sight FPVers will not spend much time above 400ft will they? I just can't understand how the FAA can so completely act contrary to the highlighted document from Congress.
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amarti1270fl on October 23, 2014
I wanted to share what happened to rocketry hobbyist that culminated in a lawsuit headed by Tripoli rocketry Associ.k Et AL Plaintiff vs Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Defendant C.A,. NO. 00-27

Details at

It classified rocket motors with propellent with more then 62.5 grams designed as a single use motor to be classified as an explosives.

It took 8 years to resolve this lawsuit at the end rocketry hobbyist won, but in my opinion it affected the overall enthusiasm for the hobby. I am certain that many of the smaller companies that were fabricating kits, engines, and other materials went out of business. There is no way to calculate the loss to the hobby for a while the hobby shrank instead of expanding as it was doing before. This of course happened at the height of the rocketry hobby in the late 90's and lagged through 2010, similar in my opinion to what is happening in the RC hobby today an explosion of interest for RC planes multi rotors, and FPV is at an all time high the entry point to the hobby is better then it has been ever.

I wanted mention this as an example of recent history of what a community can do if united. Although the AMA vs FAA lawsuit is different it speaks to a similar regulatory mindset which makes the incorrect assumption that the hobby is unable to govern itself and is not safe. I have enjoyed both Rocketry and RC flying for the majority of my life I would hate to see it regulated out of existence. I also suggest that a legal fund be established to provide the necessary resources to see the AMA vs FAA lawsuit to completion, we all have a stake in the outcome. This could potentially take years to resolve and we are all affected by theses proposed regulations. Lets do our part today to make sure we preserve the hobby we all love so much.

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jksbusiness on December 18, 2015
Thanks for keeping us informed...I would like to spend my free time relaxing with the RC hobby and not stressing out about the future of RC fun? Good job Flite Test!
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dkruger` on December 28, 2015
The latest from AMA as of December 28, 2015
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AMA vs. FAA - Lawsuit Update