jkhirsch

Here's to the Mother ****ing FAA

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I just got a phone call from the FSDO out of Louisivlle and the ****suckers told me they ramped checked my plane and found discrepancies. They told me that they ramp checked several planes, but I suspect some douchebag called and told them to ramp check my plane. He quoted a bunch of bs about having a quota of ramp checks per year but I'm not buying it just yet.

 

Then demanded that I show up at the FBO here in Lexington with my log books at 5 o' clock.

 

I'm likely to edit this post later but for now I felt like expressing some dissent towards the ****ing ***hole administration.

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It's interesting that they did a ramp check without you even being there. What could they actually ascertain? They aren't allowed to get into your airplane, so what would a visual outside inspection possibly reveal?  If you suspect somebody put them onto you, there must be a reason. Do you have enemies?

 

Perhaps an early April Fools joke?

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Shouldn't your anger first be vented at the dbag who has something personal against you? The FAA is doing its "job", akin to the cops coming to investigate based on someone providing a tip. Moreover, how did they enter your aircraft? There must be more to this story. 

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I'd get the entire story before you go out there.  If you're an AOPA member call their help line and talk to an expert.  I doubt they got "in" to your plane, and thus it is very likely they only found missing placards or similar.  They frequently get hard-ons for placards, so if you don't have fuel info by the caps, tow limits on the nose gear, "no push" here and there, etc. then that is a likely issue.  

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That is a bit odd...

Do your homework, in advance.

Consider using the AOPA legal guidance. At least know what is available.

Study up on what is proper protocol for ramp checks.

Have all your documentation lined up.

They won't be interested in spending a lot of time looking at papers of pilots/owners that have followed the rules...

In the case of a pilot that knows of a deficiency, then gets invited to see the FSDO, seek professional help first....

Put a plan together...

Good luck,

-a-

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A quick google lead me to this page: http://www.aopa.org/Pilot-Resources/PIC-archive/FAA-Enforcement/Ramp-Checks

I always lock the doors on my plane, so if I didn't do something out of character, they shouldn't have been allowed to illegally access the interior. although I would love to catch one trying to sneak into the plane without my knowledge ;)

 

I guess the first question out of my mouth will be: Is this in regard to a possible violation?

Then he can swiftly speak to an attorney.

 

Otherwise I don't really have a problem playing the bull**** reindeers games that our tax dollars fund, until they try to tell me my plane is grounded for some nonsensical reason.

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It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I really don't know how much, if anything, they can ascertain via a cursory visual inspection on a walk around. I remember the brouhaha that happened about 20 years ago when some dipwad FAA Air Carrier inspector walked a General Aviation ramp and red-tagged a Twin Cessna that had Q-Tip props. Obviously they had been bent during a gear up landing - sigh. Let's hope it's something like that.  Here's hoping that your paperwork is in order. Keep us posted.

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Every airport has a few planes that are on the ramp without engines, flat tires, etc. In short non-airworthy condition. You don't see the FAA giving them a call demanding you bring their logs. So there has to be more to this story.

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I would not show up with the logbooks on short notice.  There is nothing they can do to you for not agreeing to meet them on short notice, However if you do show up and they find something you have overlooked then there is plenty they can do.  Tell them the best you can do is next week and take the time to make sure your stuff is in order. I would not admit to the last time I had flown the plane either, in the event  something is found it is not illegal to own an unairworthy plane it is just illegal to fly it.  I would copy the page showing it is in annual, but not give them the books to go poking around in. Then if they had additional questions about AD's ect I would provide copies of the entries for those.

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True...they don't have any right to look through everything...just the entries showing AD compliance and last annual as far as I understand the situation.  Under no circumstance should you let them take any of the logs out of your presence.  I would just bring copies of the required stuff and that's it.

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I assume (i Know, I know) this was at your home base. IF so, all the locals will know what is going on. If there is a maintenance shop there check with them, they will know what the FAA were doing and what they are after.

It may be no biggie.

 

Of course you should take your log books to your mechanic, tell him you are meeting with the FSDO and go over everything with him before hand.

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Edited, what the first guy said on the phone indicated that they wanted to look at the plane again with me there.

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Jeff, you are past that now. They said they already did the ramp check and want your logbooks. You said they found discrepancies. As mentioned above, it could be as simple as missing decals or something more.

A discrepancy can be different than unairworthy. Lets hope.

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Every airport has a few planes that are on the ramp without engines, flat tires, etc. In short non-airworthy condition. You don't see the FAA giving them a call demanding you bring their logs. So there has to be more to this story.

 

that's what I'm thinking.  keep us posted.

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I think AOPA legal services will let you talk to an attorney for free I think for 1/2 hour if I remember right if you sign up and the fee was really small like $20-30.

I'd talk to one of there attorneys and not give them one thing extra than legally required.

If they are demanding a meeting I would think that they would be obligated to communicate the discrepancies prior to the meeting so you could prepare.

I feel your pain.

Aaron

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8900.1 VOLUME 6  SURVEILLANCE

CHAPTER 1  PART 91 INSPECTIONS

Section 4  Conduct a Part 91 Ramp Inspection

 

 

6-92    DISCREPANCIES FOUND DURING INSPECTION. The inspection should continue unless the inspector discovers a discrepancy that would affect the safety of flight or dispatch of the aircraft that may result in a violation of 14 CFR. In those cases the inspector should take action appropriate to the discrepancy. He or she must note all discrepancies on the job aid and discuss them with the owner/operator. The inspector may explain how to correct discrepancies found during the inspection, but the inspector should keep in mind that it is the operator’s responsibility to ensure that items are in compliance with 14 CFR.

A.    Responsibility for Airworthiness. The airworthiness of the aircraft is the responsibility of the pilot (refer to part 91, § 91.7) and monitored by Airworthiness inspectors. However, if an inspector finds an obviously unairworthy aircraft, it is the responsibility of the inspector to see that an FAA Form 8620-1, Aircraft Condition Notice (Figure 6-6) is issued. However, an inspector may need to contact the nearest Flight Standards Service (AFS) office to coordinate issuance of the notice.

B.    FAA Form 8620-1. The Aircraft Condition Notice form (Figure 6-6) is in triplicate. The top and middle sheet (both white) go to the airworthiness unit, which mails the original to the owner/lessee and retains the second. The buff-colored card must be on the aircraft where the operator can easily see it.

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I would start out with a friendly phone call asking what the inspector has a question about.  It is possibly something very simple such as an aileron that has a trailing edge wrinkle.  You could just fax the page where it was inspected and possibly be done with the entire event.

 

In any  case, start the process out on friendly terms.  In my limited dealings with FAA personel, they've actually been pretty reasonable, but they do have a job to do.  Just remember, most of the inspectors don't like paperwork any more than you do.

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From what I remember reading in the past they usually conduct a ramp check after they observe you operate the aircraft. Without seeing you operate the aircraft it would be very difficult to make any enforcement action stick.

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I've seen the FAA out doing checks on parked planes, not related to tips, once before. A 150 got tagged for sonething the inspector saw, I forgot what, I think I was brake related. My mechanic talked to the inspector about why he was out and the inspector said quota and bored in the office. Plus, the airport was on his way home so he left work early, stopped by the airport on his way home; and was home early.

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Out of curiosity what would they do from an enforcement perspective if they found that you've been flying for example with an expired ELT battery? Is that a fine or can it impact your flying certificate?

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Hopefully it doesn't open Pandora's box to a greater inspection. But if you are in full compliance and didn't add anything to the aircraft yourself that wasn't signed off on, then you shouldn't have any problems.

 

Like others have said here: let cool heads prevail and don't go into it headstrong or confrontational. Offer them a Coke and a smile.

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Great advise above.....take a pill or two, calm down, and be contrite, tough though that will be.

 

Your only goal now should be to get them out of your hair. Fairness in this situation, is but an abstract concept.

 

Good luck!

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Looks like it may be a registration issue. The FAA website shows registration was due April 2013 with a 90 day extension granted January 2014. However, here is what the FAA registry website shows when you type the registration number in:

ATTENTION!

This aircraft's registration status may not be suitable for operation.

Please contact the Aircraft Registration Branch at 1-866-762-9434 for additional information.

Continue

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