WAMASC Safety Rules

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WAMASC Safety Rules

Post by Greg Russell-Brown on Sun Nov 13, 2016 5:40 am

The purpose of the following rules is to primarily ensure the safety of yourself and your fellow aeromodellers and is also to ensure the future tenure of the Western Australian Model Aircraft Sports Centre - (WAMASC).

In the interests of all members and the public please adhere to these rules at ALL times.

Newcomers to the centre are required to sit a short safety induction prior to flight - Please contact the CFI Mr Roy Lewis via the Clubs email to arrange this via the Induction Officer Mr Bill Davies.

Below is an extract of the WAMASC safety rules:


The State Centre has a number of responsibilities due to being located within Whiteman Park. We can be viewed as an attraction, and as such, must be seen to operate in a safe and responsible manner. It is a requirement to operate model aircraft within the relevant Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) safety regulations Part 101, which may be found on the regulator’s website at http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2010C00851/Html/Volume_3#param146 CASR 1998 Part 101 and supporting Advisory Circular at http://www.casa.gov.au/wcmswr/_assets/main/rules/1998casr/101/101c03.pdf.
It is every member’s responsibility to understand and abide by these laws.


If there were no rules at all there would be anarchy and, worse still, risk of injury or death. If there were too many rules, you could feel unduly constrained. A lot of work and experience has gone into drawing up the "Safety and Operating Rules" to ensure that minimum safety standards are met. All flying is undertaken at the members’ own personal risk. No responsibility is taken by the Committee, the State Centre or its representatives for injury, damage or loss of property.

For the safety of your fellow flying members, the public, and yourself, and your continued access to the facility, it is a requirement to ABIDE by the Safety Procedures Manual.

You must abide by any direction from a Safety Officer immediately. Safety officers will try to deal with safety issues immediately. Matters referred to the committee may receive a warning, fine, suspension, expulsion or in whatever manner the committee may deem fit. If you are unclear on any point, check with your Committee.


It is mandatory to display your WAMASC membership card i.e., on your cap, shirt, or jacket. A clear plastic holder will help to preserve it. Wearing your current membership card will show that you are entitled to use the facilities of the State Centre and will help all members to get to know each other.

Noncompliance may result in the person being asked to leave the facility. The only exception is for Control Line members who shall present the card on the flight box or any other visible location.
There is provision on the back of the card for next of kin or contact in the event of an accident or illness. Please complete these details.


WAMASC and its members comply at all times with the Model Aeronautical Association of Australia, Manual of Procedures (MOP) 041 – Member Protection Policy to protect the safety, health and wellbeing of its members and the public while visiting our precinct. This is to foster mutual respect and to ensure a uniform approach to tackling inappropriate behaviour.

Breaches of this code will not be tolerated and disciplinary action may result in suspension of flying privileges or a membership being revoked. Safety Officers and Committee Members are empowered by the WAMASC Constitution to uphold the safety rules and conduct at the field. Members must follow the instructions from Safety Officers and Committee Members.


This section is designed to assist members new to the hobby learn how to handle model aircraft in as safe a manner as possible. It will also help to identify a number of inherent dangers in engine starting and handling.


One method of reducing the risk of becoming entangled in a propeller is to physically restrain the model when starting the engine. This can be accomplished as simply as asking another modeller to hold the model in position. The problem is that there will be times when other modellers are not free to assist.

Recently WAMASC has added starting frames and poles on the grassed area in the front of the pits, these are highly recommended to be used and will secure the model so as to avoid a runaway situation.


The MAAA recommends that engines of capacity between 2.5cc, or 15 size and 25cc, should not be hand started. There are two recommended methods. One is by flicking the propeller with a ‘chicken stick’,
which is a length of wooden dowel covered by a piece of rubber hose. The other method is to use an electric starter.

When starting an engine, use a low throttle setting. Generally, a few clicks up from idle is all that is required as modern engines are designed for easy starting. If an engine refuses to start or run at that setting, stop and investigate the problem instead of opening the throttle further.

Caution should be used when plugging in the battery for electric powered aircraft - (ENSURE THE AIRCRAFT IS FULLY RESTRAINED) and as a safety precaution ALL aircraft must face away from the public at all times.


Once the engine is running, there is the danger from the spinning propeller which is not unlike a miniature circular saw and produces very similar results on human extremities. At least one operation must be completed before the model can be flown. The glow plug lead must be removed from the glow plug, and this is when many incidents occur. The temptation is to reach over the top of the propeller from in front of the model. This is an extremely dangerous practice which can result in major injury to you & distress to your fellow modellers when they come to your assistance.

It is far safer to approach from the rear of the propeller for removal of the glow plug or walk around and stand behind the wing (depending upon aircraft design) so that reaching for the glow plug lead is from behind the propeller arc. Even doing this has a risk depending upon which hand is used.


Be aware that loose clothing and other items pose a risk of being drawn into a moving propeller. Another danger is the transmitter neck strap. The end should be tucked inside a shirt or jacket while starting and tuning the motor.

Aircraft with engines (or the electric equivalent) of 20cc and above are not to be started in the pit area.

Any engines or electric aircraft are not to be run up higher than idling speed in the pit area.


1.1 The first and most important consideration is for pilots to communicate. As with full size aviation, this is essential to prevent accidents. Communication between members must be conducted in a respectful and considerate manner. The aim of these rules is to ensure all members shall have fair and safe use of the facilities.

1.2 All flying will be in accordance with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority regulation CASR Part 101.000 to 101.500 (as amended from time to time), and all other rules, which can be found on the MAAA website (www.maaa.asn.au). Members are required to familiarise themselves with these rules.

In particular, and simplified:
i) No flying above 400 feet or in cloud.

ii) No flying within 30 metres horizontally of any building, structure, vehicle or any person not directly involved with the flying activity. This is deemed to be 30m from the public fence line behind the pits area.

iii) All aircraft will not approach closer than 9 metres to the active pilot holding area.

iv) No flying after the consumption of alcohol or any reaction impairing drugs.

1.3 A runway is closed for landing and takeoff and for any circuit flying in that orientation as indicated by placement of a cone in its centre point, or by a line of cones. (refer site drawings for rotary wing operations).

1.4 WAMASC Committee members and any other members appointed by the Committee as Safety Officers may provide users of the WAMASC Facility with instructions which shall be followed. Complaints and disagreements shall follow the WAMASC Guidelines which can be found on www.wamasc.wix.com/wamasc  


2.1 All aircraft will be in an airworthy condition. New aircraft or aircraft that have undergone extensive repair will be inspected by an experienced pilot or safety officer before being flown. Safety officers shall be empowered to ground any aircraft deemed to be potentially dangerous.

2.2 Where fitted, radio equipment failsafe functions shall be set such that the aircraft poses a minimum of danger should the failsafe function activate in flight.


3.1 The operational (duty) runway will be selected to allow takeoff and landing into the prevailing wind. Where little wind or still air conditions exist, the first pilot to taxi his aircraft shall have the prerogative of selecting the runway. All pilots will stand in the pilot holding area for that runway and wind direction. The operational runway and hence pilot holding area may be changed while aircraft are flying provided that all of the active pilots agree to the move beforehand.

3.2 All flying in the designated circuit area below a height of 30 metres (100 feet) will be in accordance with the prescribed circuits as shown in Figure 1. Aerobatics will be performed above 30 metres (100 feet), or outside the circuit area except as agreed at the time by active pilots and described in Rule 4 and Rule 5.

3.3 Only pilots and other persons who are directly involved with the operation of model aircraft at the time may be permitted within 30 metres of the runway or hovering area.

3.4 The maximum number of pilots to occupy the pilot holding area without a flight line controller/observer is four. The fifth pilot taking position on the flight line must be accompanied by a flight line controller/observer, and a controller/observer must remain present while there are five or more pilots flying. The flight line controller/observer will then ensure that all calls are clearly heard by all active pilots by repeating such calls if and as necessary.

3.5 All pilots will announce their intentions in a clear loud voice i.e. "Taking off", "Landing", "Low pass left to right" (or right to left), or "Retrieving aircraft". After announcing your intentions, wait for confirmation from other pilots or flight line controller/observer before initiating the manoeuvre. The pilot will then “Step Forward” one pace to indicate to all in a visual manner that he has control of the active runway.

3.6 For noise abatement considerations for our neighbours, pilots shall not allow their aircraft to stray into the designated Buffer Zones from the designated flying area as shown in Figure 2.

3.7 There will be no flying between the pilot holding areas and the pits.

3.8 Should visual contact with a model aircraft be lost, the engine must be immediately shut down so that the aircraft cannot fly away uncontrolled.

3.9 The call of “dead stick” by any pilot shall give him/her immediate landing/recovery priority to the airfield and all other active pilots shall yield to this imperative.

3.10 As is the case with full size aircraft operations, landing takes precedence over taking off taxying off the active runway takes precedence over entering it and returning to the pit area from the active runway via a taxiway takes precedence over taxying out to the active runway via a taxiway. In other words all “inbound” aircraft have priority and all “outbound” aircraft shall yield right of way.


It is recognised that modern aircraft are capable of many astounding flight manoeuvres and field operations from time to time may need to accommodate this new portion of the ever expanding flight envelope.

4.1 Aerobatic routines or 3D aerobatics may be conducted below circuit height by fixed and rotary wing aircraft capable of such manoeuvres. Such manoeuvres shall only be conducted with the consent of all active pilots occupying the pilot holding area. Such consent shall override Rule 3.2.

4.3 The operation of a central pilot holding area (CPHA) on any of the runways is subject to approval by the WAMASC committee for particular events or, on any day, the WAMASC members present under the following conditions:

(i) The pilot seeking permission to fly from CPHA must have received consent from all pilots in the pits at the time and will be described below as the “approved pilot”.

(ii) The approved pilot will access the CPHA only after all other aircraft using any other pilot holding area have landed.

(iii) Runway selection for take-off and landing will be in accordance with rule 3.1. When using the CPHA, approved pilots may taxi to the CPHA and commence accelerating to take off speed once past the CPHA. Landing will be as close as possible to a displaced threshold in front of the CPHA.

(iv) Once the approved pilot has cleared the CPHA, flying may re-commence from the other pilot holding area in accordance with standard procedures outlined in rule 3.

4.4 Due to the sensitive flight characteristics of some aircraft, for example reduced tolerance to crosswinds when landing, a pilot of any discipline can request exclusive use of any runway (and respective pilot holding area) with the same conditions as that imposed in Clause 4.3. This rule applies to ( but is not limited to), high performance aircraft such as jets.


Rules 1, 2 and 4 apply plus the following:

5.1 Helicopter operations may be conducted in Area A when the NW runway is closed and Area B when the NE runway is closed. When in use, the helicopter area must be segregated from the fixed wing flight area by the use of the traffic cones as shown in Figure 4.

5.2 Helicopter pilots are responsible for the placement and removal of the traffic cones. Traffic cones must be removed and stored when helicopter operations cease for the day.

5.3 Helicopter operations may be divided into several pilot holding areas and helicopter operations must be contained within the areas identified in Figure 4.

5.4 Hover practice and forward flight training shall only be conducted in hover Area A or B as per rule 5.1.

5.5 Experienced pilots with Silver Wing certification may fly helicopters with fixed wing aircraft on the main flight line providing the helicopter flies the same circuit as the fixed wing aircraft when at circuit height.

5.6 Prolonged hovering in the circuit area is not be permitted.

5.7 When a Helicopter is moving from one area to another, the helicopter must be landed and hand carried whether fitted with skids or wheels. This includes helicopter area to fixed wing area, pits to helicopter pad, and the reverse.

5.8 It is permissible to utilise Area A and Area B for small foam aircraft less than or equal to 1kg maximum weight. Aircraft must comply with the rules applicable to Helicopter operations. Priority is to be given to Helicopter and Multirotor operations.

5.9 Any Helicopter, Multirotor or Aircraft is only to be flown within the area bounded by the traffic cones.


6.1 Gas Turbine Operators shall be in accordance with MAAA MOP 30.

6.2 All Gas Turbine Operators must make sure that whilst operations are in progress, they have access to a mobile phone to contact Whiteman Park authorities in the event of a fire starting outside the fenced area. Refer to the notice board affixed to the outside wall of the Tx compound for the latest contact numbers for the Whiteman Park Duty Ranger.

6.3 Gas Turbine Operators shall have their own fire extinguishers at the hard stand on start up and shut down, and available during operations at all times.

6.4 Gas Turbine aircraft present a noise hazard to other members in the pits during start up and shut down. Pilots of gas turbine aircraft shall be considerate of other members and when requested will move their aircraft to provide a minimum 10 metres separation from members.


7.1 First Person View (FPV) operations shall be in accordance with MAAA MOP 66.

7.2 Both the operating pilot and the Command Pilot (CP) safety pilot shall be located such that any and all calls made by conventional RC pilots at the Pilot Holding Area for the active runway, can be heard by the operating pilot or be relayed to the operating pilot by the CP safety pilot.

7.3 While it is preferred that a synthetic vision pilot and his CP be co-located with the conventional RC pilots, he/she must at least be located as close as the equipment operational requirements allow and definitely so as to enable clear voice communications between all pilots.


9.1 There is NO FLYING on days where there is an FIRE DANGER warning issued by the Bureau of Meteorology in Perth for the coastal plain of 40+, or if the field has been closed by the Park Ranger.

9.2 Telephone Whiteman Park authorities immediately upon any crash which results in a fire outside of the fenced area. The Whiteman Park Duty Officer may be reached on 9209 6000. This number is for both day and after hours/emergency contact for Whiteman Park. Outside office hours the pre-recorded message directs callers to select 9 to be transferred to the Duty Officer.

9.3 As part of our good neighbour policy, flying is normally permitted only between the hours of 08:00 and sunset.
    (silent electric may be flown from 06:00 until 21:00 hrs).

9.4 Flight after sunset may be approved subject to special conditions.

9.5 All flying operations are to be conducted in a well-mannered, orderly fashion with due consideration for fellow flyers in accordance with our stated Code of Behaviour and the CASR.


10.1 All members shall visually display their current membership cards on their person when in the pit area.

10.2 All pilots shall hold current M.A.A.A. membership.

10.2.1 Non-M.A.A.A. affiliate members will be allowed two (2) free flying sessions and conditions will be as per the conditions of MOP042.

10.2.2 Prospective members are also covered by the conditions of MOP042.

10.2.3 Affiliate members of M.A.A.A. will be allowed three (3) free flying sessions per financial year, and thereafter will be required to apply for membership.

10.2.4 The Visitors’ Book will be signed by all Visitors and by the member, who shall be responsible for the Visitor at all times. Competitors, Display pilots, Country, Interstate and Overseas Visitors are entitled to free visits at the discretion of the Committee. Overseas Visitors shall show proof of current FAI affiliate membership.

10.3 Pilots will be accompanied by an active member who has held a minimum Bronze or Silver Wing certification for 12 months or more at all times until the pilot has attained Bronze or Silver Wings certification.

10.4 Pilots will comply with the directions of Safety Officers and Committee members at all times, who shall be empowered to reprimand, suspend for the remainder of that day, or initiate disciplinary action through the Committee upon anyone refusing to comply with these safety rules. Regardless of the circumstances or perceptions of individuals on the matter in contention, immediate compliance with the Safety Officer’s directions is mandatory.


12.1 No alcohol to be consumed in the pits during flying.

12.2 No taxiing in the pit area. Taxiing is to be no faster than walking pace and only in the area as shown in Figure 3. Pilots shall only taxi diagonally when approaching the pits across the grass. Taxying shall never be directly towards the pits.

12.3 All aircraft (including electric) will be parked in the pit area with the propeller facing away from the public area. If space does not permit parking an aeroplane in the pit, the aeroplane will be parked on the grass area in front of the pit. All parked aeroplanes will be positioned with the propeller facing away from the public area.

12.4 Engines shall be started on a low throttle setting, and not run up to full power in the pit area. Engines of capacity above 25cc (1.40) and turbines will not be started in the pits.

12.5 Engine tuning will be done on the hardstand or grass areas in front of the pits with the propeller facing away from the public area and the aircraft appropriately restrained.

12.5.1 Two concrete start-up pads for aircraft are incorporated into the grass area in front of the pits. One centre large start-up pad for large aircraft and two smaller start-up pads for small aircraft. If a large aircraft is in the centre start-up position the two smaller pads are not to be used as this would cause an engine to be run behind the larger aircraft endangering the operator.

12.6 Mobile phones may be used under the following conditions:

a. It is recommended that a 2m distance be maintained from an operating
aircraft and transmitter. Without limitation, concerned members have the right to ask mobile phone users to keep a 2m distance from their operational aircraft and transmitters at all times.

b. Use of mobile phones on the flight line is banned.

12.7 Operators of gas turbine powered models will provide their own fire extinguishers. It is recommended that petrol engine powered models also have their own fire extinguisher.


13.1 Members of the public shall not enter the pit area unless invited by a member and under their direct supervision. They must be supervised at all times and will not be left unattended in the pit area.

13.3 No unscheduled service work will be done in the runway area while flying is in progress. Similarly there will be no flying during scheduled service work inside the runway area (i.e. lawn mowing and maintenance) or when carrying out emergency repairs. No machinery, vehicles, tools or any object that could constitute a hazard will be left in the runway area during flying sessions.


14.2 The last person at the field has the responsibility to lock the frequency compound and toilet door, turn off the pit lighting, and to LOCK THE ENTRY GATE. If the Buggy Club is still in operation, the responsibility for locking the entry gate may be passed to them. This responsibility must be communicated to them prior to the last flying member exiting the centre. Any member found to have left the gate unlocked on leaving the field and is deemed negligent is liable to suspension and or a penalty as determined by the Committee.


15.1 As part of the lease requirements incumbent upon committee, WAMASC must report all incidents and accidents to the lessor. We are also required to report all accidents to the AWA. Protocol requires any member to immediately notify the committee of any incident or accident as defined in MAAA Manual of Procedures (MOP) 1. The WAMASC club will then conduct an investigation in a timely manner in accordance with MOP1.

15.2 The club committee will examine the results of the investigation and notify members of any proposed risk mitigation to prevent a recurrence of the event.

15.3 As the lessee and responsible entity for the centre, the WAMASC committee will make the final decision as to the appropriateness of any mitigation proposed as part of any investigation resulting from an incident or accident at the WA Model Aircraft Sports Centre. Such decisions will be made prior to final close out paperwork of an investigation being submitted to the AWA.15.4 The results of such an investigation along with the agreed mitigation of any perceived risk identified and any agreed mitigation judged necessary by such investigation shall be communicated to the MAAA through the AWA. The committee may inform the lessor of the results and record such action in committee records.


16.1 The Committee reserves the right to interpret as the final arbiter, modify, change or alter any of the above rules at any time.

17. WAMASC Members and Affiliate Members

17.1 Acceptance by a member of the issue to them of an MAAA card and the WAMASC Identity Card is testament that the member or affiliate member has agreed to be bound by the MAAA MOPs and the WAMASC General Conditions and Safety Procedures contained in this manual.

Amended 25 November 2013
Amended 13 March 2016 Section 5.8 and 5.9 added
Greg Russell-Brown

Posts : 11
Join date : 2016-11-12
Age : 51
Location : WAMASC

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