September 11, 2013
By Jim Moore
Officials in Austin, Texas, will not move forward with a draft local ordinance against aerial advertising, after research (including a letter from AOPA) convinced local leaders they would run afoul of federal regulations.
AOPA wrote to the city manager in July urging the city to drop an effort to prohibit aerial advertising.
The city has since acknowledged the FAA’s sole authority to regulate the National Airspace System, and that federal authority cannot be preempted by state or local legislation. The council had directed city staff to find out if there were legal obstacles to such a ban, and present a draft ordinance for consideration in late August.
Austin is not alone in a desire to limit banner tow operations, and AOPA has successfully lobbied local officials to reconsider, most recently in a Pennsylvania town which had enacted and attempted to enforce such a ban. (A citation issued to an operator under the ordinance was dismissed in court after AOPA brought relevant federal laws and regulations to the attention of local officials.)
In each case, AOPA has also noted that such prohibitions are impractical because pilots cannot be expected to familiarize themselves with local rules in every town they overfly.
Collaboration between the German government, academia, and airplane manufacturers may make future aircraft cabins more protective of pilots and passengers. The Safety Box team plans to apply auto racing technology to general aviation.
A father and his 14-year-old son were helping another pilot ferry a newly purchased aircraft from California to their home field in Virginia. The three made an overnight stop in Albuquerque before flying on to Illinois for fuel. But shortly after they parked the aircraft in Marion, Ill., they were approached by as many as 18 uniformed and non-uniformed law enforcement officers who came running toward the airplane.
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