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crm357

Altitude ceiling issue

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forgive me if this isn’t quite the place to post this, but i could use help in airspace interpretation.  i’m getting ambiguous readings and i'm trying to ensure that i make the proper interpretation as to where i can legitimately fly.

i’m looking to get FAA authorization to fly just inside the Class D airspace of Phoenix Deer Valley airport (DVT).  the sectional for DVT shows a ceiling of <4000 feet AGL [-40], but the FAA UAS map at faa.maps.arcgis.com shows a height limit of 300 feet for the quadrangle i wish to fly in (Northwest corner of the Class D boundary).

i used Kittyhawk for request FAA authorization via LAANC and at Step 4 of 4 (within Kittyhawk) i came across bullet 5: “Altitude limits are absolute values . . . shall not be added to any structures”.  note Kittyhawk is consistent with the map shown by faa.maps.arcgis.com for the quandrangle in question (300’ limit).  [i have an snapshot but this site only prompts for an image at a URL and i don't have a URL: it's a PNG file on the hard drive :(]

FAA regs clearly state that one can fly up to 400’ above the top of a structure (say, a tower) but both the faa.maps.arcgis.com map and Kitthawk/LAANC submission process suggest this is not so.  they’re essentially saying that if i need to inspect a communications tower that would require me to fly above 300’ i cannot do it.  yes?  no?

 

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No.  LAANC I controlled airspace with specific instructions, you must follow this instructions.  If there’s an obstacle in your flight path that you won’t clear with the altitude restriction then you need to figure out a differnt path.

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thanks Av8Chuck for the quick response; i figured this is where it might wind up.  and this surfaces a cautionary tale: the 400’ ceiling rule is not absolute, which might be lost on new drone pilots.  always consult the various FAA sources to be sure, and leave enough time prior to any flight operations to ensure one has proper clearance.

 

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