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The first clip in the following video shows a Falcon 900X performing a low pass:

What exactly is considered reckless here and why would the pilot lose his license?

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    $\begingroup$ Oh yeah, that'll do it. If he'd stayed on the runway axis, he probably would've been alright. $\endgroup$
    – John K
    Feb 27, 2022 at 19:43
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    $\begingroup$ How do you know the pilot lost their license? $\endgroup$
    – copper.hat
    Feb 28, 2022 at 7:15
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    $\begingroup$ I thought that picture couldn't be a real frame from the video as the plane looks like its wing tip is barely 10 feet off the ground, but nope, it's real.. $\endgroup$
    – Michael
    Feb 28, 2022 at 15:04
  • $\begingroup$ Pretty sure people only get to fly jets at treetop height when those jets have guns on them, or are at least trainers for the ones that do. $\endgroup$
    – llama
    Feb 28, 2022 at 17:58
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    $\begingroup$ @copper.hat I'm going out on a limb here, but I'm guessing OP simply read the title of the video and took that as fact. Certainly the pilot should expect to lose their licence after a stunt like that. $\endgroup$
    – J...
    Feb 28, 2022 at 21:12

1 Answer 1

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This event appears to have taken place in Argentina. However, I cannot determine if it is a civil aircraft of U.S. registry ("N" numbered aircraft).

If it is not a civil aircraft of U.S. registry and took place in Argentina then the applicable U.S. regulations (14 CFR Part 91) would not apply.

However, if the aircraft was a civil aircraft of U.S. registry operating in Argentina then, according to 14 CFR 91.703 (a) (3) most of 14 CFR Part 91 would apply, "...so far as it is not inconsistent with applicable regulations of the foreign country where the aircraft is operated or Annex 2 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation."


If 14 CFR Part 91 does apply, the regulations and policy shown below would likely be applied regarding the pilot(s), assuming the FAA was made aware of the issue.

14 CFR 91.119 (c) - Minimum safe altitudes requires that an aircraft remain at least 500 feet AGL (or no closer than 500 feet to any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure in sparsely populated areas).

Also, as noted in FAA Order 2150.3C - FAA Compliance and Enforcement Program on page 9-3 (near the bottom of the page) "Reckless" is defined as:

Reckless. A violation is reckless when the violator's conduct demonstrates a gross disregard for or deliberate indifference to safety or or a safety standard.

14 CFR 91.13 (a) Careless or reckless operation states:

(a) Aircraft operations for the purpose of air navigation. No person may operate an aircraft in a careless or reckless manner so as to endanger the life or property of another.

Also, on page 9-22 of the FAA Order 2150.3C (see the image below) note that even over an uncongested area low flying is considered as a "Severity 2" violation (with Severity 3 being the most severe).

enter image description here

So, if the pilot's license was revoked it probably was due to the regulations and policies noted above.

(During airshows where aircraft are flying/operating lower than FAR 91.119 - Minimum Safe Altitudes would allow, an FAA Waiver is written that contains provisions and restrictions that provide for an equivalent level of safety)

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  • $\begingroup$ Did FAA regulations apply to this flight? The caption mentions Argentina, and I couldn’t make out a registration from the video. There’s no doubt it’s reckless, though! $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Feb 27, 2022 at 21:32
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    $\begingroup$ @Pondlife: if it was an civil aircraft of U.S. registry far part 91 (most of it) would apply. I did not see in the video if it was an "N" numbered airplane, but I see now that it probably occurred in Argentina. I will make some adjustment to my answer. See FAR 91.703. Good catch! $\endgroup$
    – user22445
    Feb 27, 2022 at 21:46
  • $\begingroup$ Argentina seems to have quite strict laws on this as well: "ARTICLE 221. – Shall be punished with imprisonment from 6 months to 4 years: [...] 2) The one who, without authorization, made risky flights endangering the life or property of third parties;" (Aeronautical Code of Argentina, translated by Google). $\endgroup$
    – Bianfable
    Feb 28, 2022 at 9:41
  • $\begingroup$ Are these minimum altitude limits applicable when the aircraft is cleared for low pass over the runway? (or announces a low pass over an uncontrolled airport runway) $\endgroup$ Feb 28, 2022 at 10:08
  • $\begingroup$ @VladimirF: yes, even if cleared for a low pass the minimum regulatory altitudes apply in accordance with FAR 91.119. This is why (in the U.S.) the FAA issues a written "Waiver" for airshow pilots that contain provisions and restrictions (e.g. how close the crowd can be to the runway, etc.) in order to authorize low flying during the show. $\endgroup$
    – user22445
    Feb 28, 2022 at 13:45

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