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Close the field?

Should we close the flying field?

  • Yes - it’s the smart thing to do.

    Votes: 10 62.5%
  • No - I need to have an outdoors thing to do.

    Votes: 6 37.5%

  • Total voters
    16

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#1
As everyone is aware, COVID-19 is causing no end of problems with socializing, as well as flying, in our hobby.

I’m one of the board members for our club, and our club is currently going through the decision to shut our field down until further notice. Several board members are against it; their reasoning is, “social distancing seems to be working, and I need a release.”

While I understand that, California has been under a “shelter in place” order, and all parks, beaches, campgrounds, and other public gathering places have been closed for use. All of the other club fields in the area have closed due to preventing the spread of the virus. I also see that the average age of our club members is 68, and many of the members are not in the greatest of health to begin with. In my mind, it seems like a pretty obvious decision, but we have several members of the board who are opposed.

So, I want to get people’s opinions here - what do you guys think? Should we shut down all field activities, or continue letting people fly?
 

Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#2
As everyone is aware, COVID-19 is causing no end of problems with socializing, as well as flying, in our hobby.

I’m one of the board members for our club, and our club is currently going through the decision to shut our field down until further notice. Several board members are against it; their reasoning is, “social distancing seems to be working, and I need a release.”

While I understand that, California has been under a “shelter in place” order, and all parks, beaches, campgrounds, and other public gathering places have been closed for use. All of the other club fields in the area have closed due to preventing the spread of the virus. I also see that the average age of our club members is 68, and many of the members are not in the greatest of health to begin with. In my mind, it seems like a pretty obvious decision, but we have several members of the board who are opposed.

So, I want to get people’s opinions here - what do you guys think? Should we shut down all field activities, or continue letting people fly?
The local club fields here are closed.
Surely it should be a matter of personal choice. Maintain the required isolation and it should be fine.
The one thing that they haven't realised yet is how air-conditioning aids in the virus being spread. I suspect that the reason NY is such a hot spot is the amount of air-conditioning in use.

Have fun!
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#3
Something that was just raised by the club president:

We fly on private land. That land is NOT owned by the club, but rather, by a family who allows us use of their empty field. Other clubs in the area are on park land or public areas; we are not. But, if the family that is allowing us to use the land finds out we are allowing people to gather in a non-essential gathering of more than 10 people (we're a club of nearly 300 members), that violates state and county orders. The landowners might be legally responsible for any actions going on there at the field.

We originally got the ability to use the land due to passive surveillance - a chop shop was going on at the field, and people were dumping car parts there. If club members are violating potential mandates, it may be possible that we get ousted from the land permanently. THAT would be a bigger worry for me, since it's pretty stinkin' difficult right now to find a place to fly in San Diego County or even Southern California. Do we risk it?
 

moret

Well-known member
#4
I would not vote to close out field but I am not sure if we have 30 people in the club. I was there yesterday and another guy came in to fly, he was on one side of the club house and I on the other. We said hi and talked from 20 foot away. But a club with 300 members is a whole different story. Last year it was a good night to have 10-12 people at meetings. Being retired, I go a lot during weekdays. I usually the only person there. I am lucky, the Field is just a mile from my house.
 

LitterBug

Troll Spammer
#5
That's got to be a tough one. How many people are showing up at the same time, and are they keeping their distance? I would set a firm limit of how many people can be present at the field at once, and maybe set up a calendar for people to schedule times. Might be a good idea to set a max of 5 people so you are not flirting with the 10 ppl max.

My club and field is about a mile from my house and we have < 30 members. We hardly ever have more than five people at the field at a time even on the best of days. Weather here has not been great for flying and the field is very swampy from all the rain we have had. At some point in the near future, we will need to start mowing it. I mowed our yard for the first time this year last weekend.

Cheers!
LitterBug
(Columbus, OH)
 
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LitterBug

Troll Spammer
#6
The local club fields here are closed.
Surely it should be a matter of personal choice. Maintain the required isolation and it should be fine.
The one thing that they haven't realised yet is how air-conditioning aids in the virus being spread. I suspect that the reason NY is such a hot spot is the amount of air-conditioning in use.

Have fun!
New York City and the east coast areas around it have a bunch of things going against it. 1) Very high population density. 2) Very high usage of public transit, 3) high number of busy international airports. The nature of how this thing spreads have made it the perfect storm for spread. If you look at the maps put out by Johns Hopkins University, you can see that areas surrounding the major international airports are hotspots.
Screenshot from 2020-04-02 01-29-32.png


Regards,
LitterBug
 
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Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#7
New York City and the east coast areas around it have a bunch of things going against it. 1) Very high population density. 2) Very high usage of public transit, 3) high number of busy international airports. The nature of how this thing spreads have made it the perfect storm for spread. If you look at the maps put out by Johns Hopkins University, you can see that areas surrounding the major international airports are hotspots.
View attachment 164228

Regards,
LitterBug
Yes the hotspots are obvious! What the maps do not show is where persons contracted the virus. Airports, Aircraft, ships, as well as other places with public or shared air-conditioning are great places to share the virus but then people do not live in them but rather take the virus home.

A week or so later they take it to the hospital, often after sharing it with their family. I avoid air-conditioned spaces like the plague.

Just my thoughts based upon
 

alan0043

Active member
#8
Hi Everyone,

I was out scouting around my area for a place to fly myself yesterday. My property is a little to small to fly on. The local field that I like to go to is closed right now. All of the schools in my state are also closed for now. The plane that I want to fly is the tiny trainer.

Hi sprzout, in your earlier post you mentioned the word ' chop shop '. The word to me means a chop that is cutting up stolen cars for parts. If is kind of activity is going on, were is the local police department doing about it ? I hope your flying field is safe to fly at. Doesn't sound like some people don't want to recycle.

Be safe out there and enjoy the blue sky's !
Al
 

The Fopster

Well-known member
#10
@Hai-Lee ..as far as is known ,the virus is not airborne,its contact based ???
In fact most credible scientists are currently saying they can't be sure if it can be airborne. The only safe option (for now) seems to be to assume that it can transmitted by airborne means as well as by contact.
Other learning from Europe relating to other posts in this thread - use of air-conditioning in Italy is low relative compared to the USA, and it hit that country in winter (where, in EU anyway, it is usually switched off), but they have been a massive spike. So - no reason to assume air-con is a factor, and avoiding air conditioned spaces is unlikely to make any difference to your risk.
Also - it hit southern European countries much harder and faster than northern, which suggests that "warmer weather" is also unlikely to be a get out of jail free card.
Bottom line - keep a safe distance from any person not in your household, and avoid all unnecessary activity that involves contact with others. We need all the flyers out in the fields once this is done, so let's all stay safe. It's a good opportunity to get some building done, crashed models repaired or simulator practice for rusty thumbs! If you're lucky enough to be surrounded by open space with room to fly solo, treasure it! You're lucky.
 

danskis

Well-known member
#11
@daxian - just the opposite! That's why they want you to stand 6 feet apart and why they are placing such an emphasis on masks for medical professionals. It is spread by being aerosolized through coughing or sneezing. Once someone does cough or sneeze the virus can live a long time on plastic or metal. If you touch that surface and stick your finger up your nose your probably gonna get it. If you wash your hands and don't touch your face you greatly reduce the risk of getting it. Disclaimer: I know nothing but my wife has a PhD in toxicology and public health and that's all we've been talking about for the last two week.

@sprzout - Since finding a place to fly is so difficult where you live I wouldn't risk losing the field, especially for such a large club.
 

makattack

Winter is coming
Moderator
Mentor
#12
Our fields are closed because they are on public parks/land. Before they were closed, members were sending warnings about how a lot of kids who were out of school were hanging out at the parks and not practicing good social distancing... with the many older and at risk members, most weren't even flying before they closed the parks.
 

Merv

Well-known member
#13
I suspect that the reason NY is such a hot spot is the amount of air-conditioning in use.
AC could play a roll, there is a lot we just don't know. I doubt AC is playing a roll at this time in New York, it's is not AC season yet. I'm guessing that it has more to do with how tightly pack the people are in New York.

Should a field be closed? In this hobby we have always asked people to consider safety, if someone is flying unsafe, we have no problem asking them to stop. Now we have one more thing to add to the safety list, keep your distance. I'm guessing, it is very possible someone could fly safely at your field. I might be wise to limit the numbers gathered at any given time.
 
#14
I would do the responsible thing and close it for a bit. its not going to hurt anything and also, you are helping the problem instead of possibly contributing. you might be putting your club at risk too, especially of somebody ends up sueing you guys because somebody wasnt responsible and showed up sick. You have a great facility, the board should do there best to be legal and safe
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#15
I would do the responsible thing and close it for a bit. its not going to hurt anything and also, you are helping the problem instead of possibly contributing. you might be putting your club at risk too, especially of somebody ends up sueing you guys because somebody wasnt responsible and showed up sick. You have a great facility, the board should do there best to be legal and safe
They could also sue the landowner, who would most likely revoke our land use agreement or worse, come after us for allowing it. I don't want someone to get sick and die from this thing, nor do i want us to lose our field for it - it would most likely be the death of the club, because no responsible landowner or city/county is going to allow us to fly on their property if we get sued. Too much liability for them in the future.
 

danskis

Well-known member
#16
as @Merv pointed out I think it would be possible to fly safely at your field BUT I fly at a city park/airfield filled with over 60s and they are clueless about social distancing (until I beat on them) - plus there is a lot of misinformation out there and people don't really understand the hows of keeping safe. On top of that, how would you know where a person actually got infected.
 

sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#17
as @Merv pointed out I think it would be possible to fly safely at your field BUT I fly at a city park/airfield filled with over 60s and they are clueless about social distancing (until I beat on them) - plus there is a lot of misinformation out there and people don't really understand the hows of keeping safe. On top of that, how would you know where a person actually got infected.
Doesn't really matter in the lawyers eyes. In today's litigious society, if there's a chance of someone getting infected, someone will use that. I myself don't want to be liable for it.
 

messyhead

Well-known member
#18
I voted No before I read this full post, but in your case, I've changed it to Yes. It sounds like too much liability, and with such a big membership, and of the 'at risk' age group, the only sensible option would be to close. If people then took it upon themselves to fly there, against the club advice, and without permission from the club, then it's on them.

I'm not in a club, but the one I was thinking of joining has closed their field.
 

Captain Jay

Well-known member
#19
As everyone is aware, COVID-19 is causing no end of problems with socializing, as well as flying, in our hobby.

I’m one of the board members for our club, and our club is currently going through the decision to shut our field down until further notice. Several board members are against it; their reasoning is, “social distancing seems to be working, and I need a release.”

While I understand that, California has been under a “shelter in place” order, and all parks, beaches, campgrounds, and other public gathering places have been closed for use. All of the other club fields in the area have closed due to preventing the spread of the virus. I also see that the average age of our club members is 68, and many of the members are not in the greatest of health to begin with. In my mind, it seems like a pretty obvious decision, but we have several members of the board who are opposed.

So, I want to get people’s opinions here - what do you guys think? Should we shut down all field activities, or continue letting people fly?
I would strongly advise to close the club to all flyers and if anyone is caught flying, toss them from the club for 1 year and be strong about it... I want to fly so bad but our club has been closed since the middle of March and may not open until this pandemic is over. For now it's April and most likely through May as well. Most of our regular members are older and at high risk of getting this disease and ultimately will die. The best way to fight it is to stay at home and don't risk anyone's healthy future. Flying can wait!!! Period
Stay safe,
 
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sprzout

Knower of useless information
Mentor
#20
I would strongly advise to close the club to all flyers and if anyone is caught flying, toss them from the club for 1 year and be strong about it... I want to fly so bad but our club has been closed since the middle of March and may not open until this pandemic is over. For now it's April and most likely through May as well. Most of our regular members are older and at high risk of getting this disease and ultimately will die. The best way to fight it is to stay at home and don't risk anyone's healthy future. Flying can wait!!! Period
Stay safe,
We had an emergency board meeting this morning and several members changed their minds to close the field. I think it had to do with people knowing someone directly affected by virus - we found out a club member's family member passed from respiratory failure just a few days after testing positive for COVID-19. While they weren't someone who visits the field on a regular basis or even in regular contact with our members, it kind of hit close to home.

We'll be revisiting a possible reopening in 2 weeks, but with the cases growing to over 1000 reported infected in San Diego County and law enforcement patrolling to enforce fines for people visiting beaches and public parks that have been closed as well as having larger gatherings, I'm kinda glad we're making the decision to close.