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Businessman challenging city on parachuting rights

Very well said, TTT. It amazes me that the city would take this fight, on the backs of the local citizens, to fight the FAA on denying an activity the right to use the airport which the city didn't even pay for...

November 20, 2011 at 9:41 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Businessman challenging city on parachuting rights

Again, I do not know of a single Dropzone operating in the US that offers this imaginary "$10,000,000" liability insurance. So, what this Ron character is proposing, is an insurane policy that would more or less drive a skydiving company bankrupt. It goes back to the basic principle that you cannot leverage a requirement against one user of the airport and not the other. What other businesses at the Airport carry this insurance?

Skydiving is like flying. You leave the ground, and incur risks. To require one operation to have an absurd policy and not the other is discrimination. When you rent an aircraft, is your family given $1,000,000 automatically if you crash it, regardless of fault? Really? What's the point of a release of liability if folks think that a parachute fatality results in an instant payout?

If the city of Lawrence wants to deny McCauley the right to use that airport, then they should never have accepted the Millions in Federal funding. You accept that money, and you agree to allow citizens to use the air port for general aviation activies. The FAA does not discern between Skydiving, flying your family 172, or flying a hot air balloon. They all fall under general aviation. and are entitled to the use of public airports. This has been proved time and time again in court, when airports have tried to deny right-of-use to other parachute schools. They city takes X-Million dollars, they agree to open the airport up to airmen to use. If Lawrence takes this to court, they will lose, just as countless other airports have lost that think they can take Federal Money and deny citizens the use of the facites.

November 20, 2011 at 7:56 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Town Talk: UPDATE: Kasold to be fully open by Wed.; Budding business hopes to teach people how to live green; new master plan includes millions for Lawrence airport; parachutists vs. pilots

To Ron ~ if your logic is correct, than any user of the Lawrence should carry the same liability Insurance. Any pilot that takes off, lands, or enters the airspace of Larwrence much purchase $100 Million blanket Liability Insurance and pay $1,000,000 immediatly to the family of any person injured in a flight to/from Lawrence.

Why would you put this constrait on one business an not on the other? What's the difference between flying an aircraft and exiting one with a certified parachute? According to the FAA, nothing. They are both classified as legitimate aviation activites. Why you would even suggest that one be required to purchase an unattainable insurance policy (not a single one of the 250+ dropzones in the US carry this insurance....) is discrimination. Lets require ALL aerospace activities to carry $100,000,000 Insurance policy.

November 17, 2011 at 9:57 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Town Talk: UPDATE: Kasold to be fully open by Wed.; Budding business hopes to teach people how to live green; new master plan includes millions for Lawrence airport; parachutists vs. pilots

Without a control Tower, Airman use radios to communicate intentions in the area. Skydivers use the same general rules for airspace that an aircraft uses. For example, when a pilot begins approach and decent to land, he/she will radio into the local frequency and communicate with all other aircraft. Skydiving is no different. Jump pilots communicate with other traffic in the area and announce before allowing the skydivers to clilmb out of the aircraft. Parachutists deploy their parachutes and enter a traffic pattern just as a pilot would: Crosswind leg, downwind leg, baseleg, final approach. It's false to assume that skydiving and aircraft cannot coexist. For example, many large and successful dropzones operate on public airport with aviation school and see general aviation traffic far heavier than Lawrence will.
Why the city assumes that they must 'Shut down' a few times a year to allow jumpers is beyond me, because skydivers follow the same rules of everyone else. Airports do not 'shut down' because skydivers are in the air, and Skydivers/Pilots share responsibility for communicating who is in the pattern. If an aircraft needs to land, parachutists will circle until the airspace is empty. If an aircraft comes in after the jumpers have left the plane but before they have landed, the pilot will do a go-around, just as they would if another aircraft was taking off or landing.
By the same token, Lawrence does recieve Federal Funding to Maintain that airport, and in doing so has agreed not to discriminate against legitimte aviation activites. By refusing to allow parachutes to land at the airport, they have broken their contract. Why the City of Lawrence is fighting this makes no sense at all.....

November 17, 2011 at 7:42 p.m. ( | suggest removal )