[AMRadio] FW: "FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016" to affect towers and masts over 50 feetin height.

Tue Jul 19 13:26:38 EDT 2016

This will be unpopular in this forum, but here goes..................

As an amateur radio operator for close to sixty years and a pilot for over
forty years I can appreciate both sides of the argument. For the sake of
discussion, let's assume both activities are hobbies and that the hobbyists
in each harbor beliefs that their hobby is the more important. Of course,
that is an invalid premise since towers have a potential detrimental impact
on non-hobbyist aviation interests. Let's ignore that aspect for now.

The lack of a tower may make communications difficult or impossible. An
unlighted tower can kill people. Which is more important? From my
perspective, the aviation side of the equation wins - hands down.

-----Original Message-----
From: AMRadio [mailto:amradio-bounces at mailman.qth.net] On Behalf Of
w5jo at brightok.net
Sent: Tuesday, July 19, 2016 12:09 PM
To: Donald Chester <k4kyv at charter.net>; amradio at mailman.qth.net; CW
Reflector <cw at mailman.qth.net>
Subject: Re: [AMRadio] "FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016" to
affect towers and masts over 50 feetin height.

I have sent a message to my congressman expressing my dismay with the tower
provision of HR 636 but doubt it will do any good with him.  He is typically
a head in the sand type and won't buck the leadership.  So I contacted my
ARRL Division Director about it.

In the discussion he, too, is a bit dismayed and the position of the ARRL is
they have determined that the law will not apply because of the "adjacent" 
clause section in the bill.  However we still have to deal with Rules and
Regulations issued by the Administrator of the FAA and who knows what that
person will do.  There have been several attempts in Texas to pass a bill
like this but it always failed.  Evidently the Crop Dusters made an end run
to Washington and will lobby the FAA to their point of view.

My director is going to contact the legal counsel for the ARRL and ask for
clarification.  I will bet the author or his staff cannot do that because
they do not really understand what they have done.

So it behooves us to watch the FAA rules and regulations to see what they
do.  Given the number of those being issued by the administration, that will
be a daunting task.


-----Original Message-----
From: Donald Chester
Sent: Sunday, July 17, 2016 3:26 PM
To: amradio at mailman.qth.net ; CW Reflector
Subject: [AMRadio] "FAA Extension, Safety,and Security Act of 2016" to
affect towers and masts over 50 feetin height.

It looks like this one was sneaked in over us, but it has the potential of
severely affecting amateur radio towers and antennas.  I have seen no
mention of this from ARRL, and the news just appeared a couple of days ago
in discussions on QRZ.com and the Tower Talk reflector.

New rules would  require alternating orange and white paint and obstruction
lighting on towers and poles over 50' tall.  Apparently, meteorological
testing towers and cellphone masts have been  popping up unexpectedly in
rural areas serviced by crop dusters, and this has become a concern not only
to crop dusters, but other low-flying air traffic like medical evacuation
and news-reporting helicopters. Towers, poles and masts between 50' and
200',  below the current minimum height (except near an airport) of 200
feet, out in open fields, have resulted in collisions with the masts or
their guy wires.

As part of new FAA funding legislation, submitted as H.R.636,  "In addition
to medical reforms, the legislation requires the FAA to develop regulations
for marking towers between 50 and 200 feet tall to improve their visibility
to low-flying aircraft and help prevent accidents."

Don k4kyv

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