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  1. #1
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    Nov. 16, 2005
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    Default That helicopter over Global

    So - I've been at the last few global shows. This last one, we had a helicopter buzz the stadium and the rest of the show grounds twice. It was rather loud, intrusive, and to be honest, intimidating. Apparently one horse in the warm-up was spooked enough to dump its rider (national ring). Anyway, it's sad to think that the neighboring land owner would think that it's ok to frighten people and their horses, as he is reported to be a horse owner himself, and a supporter of equestrian activities (as long as they are on his terms).

    I hope we don't have helicopter activities for the next few shows going forward. It's sad to think that someone would endanger innocent people, when he himself is just not happy about people being near his turf. If I've misinterpreted the situation in any way, please let me know. But this is all I can really come up with.

    Next time, I'll try to film it. Apparently doing this sort of thing might be an FAA violation.


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  2. #2
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    Oooo the battle in Wellington wagers on...its very sad. Did you read the article about 2 known supporters of Bellisimo having their house broken into and being threatened, one was sort of at gun point...crazy stuff!
    Samantha Werner

    There is something about riding down the street on a prancing horse that makes you feel like something, even when you ain't a thing. ~ Will Rogers



  3. #3
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    That's really sad if it's intentionally done to upset horses and make the atmosphere unpleasant. I suspect there is an elevation law - someone may want to check if he's flying within the legal limits!

    I don't see a helicopter as a big deal at all, personally. Maybe because I used to have my horse boarded next to an AFB, and had a lesson during their air show? Or maybe because now we get F-16s in full afterburner flying over us at pretty low and loud elevations while I'm riding.

    A couple years ago one of the AZ Dressage Association shows was at the same time as a tournament which Prince Harry was attending on the same facility. Some RAF planes decided to do a salute to him, which took them flying very low and very loud over the top of the dressage show in formation - there were some definite problems there! The second day of the show they had the times of flyovers posted and announced repeatedly so riders could take whatever precautions they needed for safety.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed



  4. #4
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    The FAA has rules governing low level flight. Helicopters can fly below the minimums but only if they can do so "without hazard to persons or property."

    If you wish to complain, here is the FAA doc that explains how to do so. They take such complaints seriously, IME.

    http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/...ia/nlowfly.pdf
    **********
    We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
    -PaulaEdwina


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  5. #5

    Default

    HUGE problem at ADA show at Westworld - a friend of mine was dumped from her Grand Prix huge horse when a fighter jet buzzed extremely low - maybe what you're talking about, netg. Here is the article text.

    By Edward Gately

    The Republic | azcentral.com

    Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:02 PM

    Horses and military-jet fighters are a dangerous combination.

    For the past two years, the Scottsdale Air Fair and the Arizona Dressage Association’s Fall Fiesta and AZ State Championships Dressage Show have taken place over the same weekend in early November in close proximity.

    The air fair takes place at Scottsdale Airport, while the equestrian show takes place at the WestWorld events center, on the other side of the Pima Freeway from the airport. Both are city properties.

    At a recent City Council meeting, Chad Farmer, the dressage association’s first vice president of recognized shows, said military jet flyovers have caused the horses to panic, creating a “very dangerous” situation for the horses, riders and others in the equestrian center.

    During the November 2011 show, two military jets flew over WestWorld at a low altitude, creating a “deafening” noise that caused horses to panic and flee, he said. During last month’s show, no flyovers occurred until the final day, when two jets flew over at a higher altitude, creating a similar panic, he said.

    Farmer urged the council to be “careful when permitting events at the airport.”

    Cindy Goldman told the council her daughter, Emily, 20, was a rider in the November 2011 show when the low-altitude flyover caused a panic among all of the horses. She has been riding since age 8, and was able to calm her horse before anyone was hurt, she said.

    “There’s nothing scarier as a mother than to watch your daughter on a 1,500-pound animal in a dead run,” she said. “My daughter just reacted from her gut, but a less-skilled rider ... could have been killed, or the horse could have been killed. Jets and horses shouldn’t be in the same airfield.”

    The past two air fairs have been co-sponsored by Ciao Catering, the airport’s restaurant Zulu Caffe and Sound Lighting FX, since the city stopped sponsoring the event. This November’s event attracted about 10,000 people.

    The air fair will take place again in 2013, but measures have been put in place to ensure no military flyovers at WestWorld, said DeeDee Maza, owner of Ciao Catering and Zulu Caffe.

    Maza said there were no incidents over WestWorld during last month’s show because the co-sponsors worked with WestWorld and the airport control tower to ensure there were no flyovers during the dressage event.

    “This year we worked very, very well, and there were no incidents,” she said.

    Brian Dygert,WestWorld’s general manager, said he and Gary Mascaro, the city’s aviation director, will work together to eliminate the potential for a flyover during the dressage event.

    If the events take place on the same weekend in 2013, “we’re going to have to take more proactive steps,” Dygert said.

    “The danger is catastrophic ... that’s why you don’t just hope it won’t happen,” he said. “We’re going to do better.”

    Mascaro said there was direct communication between the airport and WestWorld before and during last month’s events after the November 2011 flyover to ensure a similar flyover didn’t occur this time.

    “Too often, a tragedy has to happen before a change is made,” Goldman said.



  6. #6
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    Default

    Definitely the same show - but 2011 it was definitely RAF from what I've heard. I never heard if the polo horses had problems, too, but that place was insane even without flyovers because of that event.


    The indoor rings were worst in general from what I heard, because you had no idea what was happening and it sounded like the roof could have been falling or something. Just not good...
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed



  7. #7
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    Default

    Horses that live next to airfields get used to the noise. Someone once sent me a photo of her riding in a dressage ring, and in the not too distant background, two Blue Angels were shooting landings. The location of the dressage facility was elevated, and the airfield at a lower elevation, so the jets and the horse appeared to be nearly at the same level. It was quite a fascinating photo - wish I had kept it!

    As for the helicopter buzzing the shows - it could have been folks deliberately trying to disrupt the dressage show. Or it could have been a photo shoot (although one would hope they would NOT do this during a show). Or it could have been a news crew, or a real estate agent showing the facility to someone looking to buy in the area - but again, they should have kept to a safe altitude.

    BI, yes, please try to video it if it happens again. And report it to the local authorities - and to the local media outlets.

    As folks have said, it is dangerous. The pilot could find himself in big trouble if someone had gotten badly hurt because of his antics.
    Last edited by DownYonder; Apr. 5, 2013 at 05:53 AM.



  8. #8
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    Do 'copters have numbers? Mr P used to have a plane which we leased to a flying club. One of its members flew low over Great Falls Park and someone reported it to the FAA. Who called us about the incident. Luckily we were able to say "Not us" and we can prove it
    I wasn't always a Smurf
    Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
    "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
    The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.



  9. #9
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    Default

    It seems to me if your horse spooks at a helo or a jet you've failed in your preparing the horse for public appearance.

    Why do some folks want to "bubble wrap" a horse and "protect" it from the normal things horses come in contact with? That just seems like foolishness to me.

    The adjective "dressage" modifies the noun "horse." Maybe emphasis should be on the noun, not the adjective.

    On the specific subject of low flights, there are rules but there are exceptions for helos and military aircraft are exempt from some FAA rules.

    G.

    Naval Aviator, retired.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


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  10. #10
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    Apr. 2, 2011
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Guilherme View Post
    It seems to me if your horse spooks at a helo or a jet you've failed in your preparing the horse for public appearance.
    Preposterous. You imply actually taking the time to prepare a horse for the unthinkable

    Nope, it is much easier to dumb the horse and the world down to our capabilities... Sad but true.


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  11. #11

    Default

    I'm all about the jets - step-daughter of a fighter pilot and have spent many years around fighter jets. Lots of fly-bys. New to dressage and live right where we had a major incident about a year ago and where I showed this weekend.

    But in all seriousness, how can I prepare my horse for a low level fly by from a screaming jet? I have access to hot air balloons, lots of low-flying private planes (private jets and prop planes), helicopters, galloping horses, trucks, tractors, huge trailers, western riders, miniature horses, kids, winds, thunderstorms, hail, dust storms, bunnies, music, motorcycles, backfires, a shooting range, ghosts my own mind, and the standard Very Scary Plastic Bags blowing in the wind. Other than exposing him to the above, which I have, and aside from regular training and preparation, how could I ever be sure that I have adequately prepared for his reaction to a low level incredibly loud roaring fly by enough so that I can guarantee my safety, his safety, and the safety of every other horse, rider, and spectator?

    I know the rider very well who was unseated during the fly-by, and she is an amazing rider with a very sticky seat. But she could have been killed, along with her horse, other people and horses, etc. It was a very, very bad situation. This was NOT a jet flying overhead, this was a jet that buzzed the show, with many people reporting that they could "see the whites of the pilot's eye." I think that a line has to be draw somewhere. I agree that we can't wrap our horses or ourselves in bubble wrap, nor can we dumb down everything, but I don't think that preventing low level fly bys from a jet is wrapping in bubble wrap or dumbing down anyone. Sure, incidents and traumas can happen at any time for many reasons, but this seems to be asking for it.


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  12. #12
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    Default

    I don't think that I could bombproof myself to a low flying jet or helicopter, much less expect my horse to be as such. We live right next to the flight line and I don't ever sleep when they are running night ops.

    One must remember too, that a horses senses are MUCH more heightened than ours. What sounds loud to us, must sound incomprehensible to them. And at least we know what those things are!

    Not everybody has access to planes that they can school with and IMO esp upper level horses are all a special kind of wack a doodle. They have to be to have that extra oomph that it takes. When one of those beasts gears up and decides to peace out... you are just a fly on the wall.

    It's in very, very poor taste of the pilot to act as he did, and I hope that the proper channels are gone through to ensure he doesn't pull a stunt like that again.
    Quote Originally Posted by MistyBlue View Post
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  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=Superminion;6924381]I don't think that I could bombproof myself to a low flying jet or helicopter, much less expect my horse to be as such. QUOTE]

    Years ago I was taking a lesson when F-16s flew by in missing man formation in full afterburner. I almost jumped off the horse in my reaction, as she just sort of hunched lower then walked along as if nothing had happened.

    Conveniently, their commanding officer happened to be a horse person and happened to be about 15' from me when it happened. I never heard what kind of trouble they got in, but he said they were NOT cleared for that flight path or elevation and they would be hearing about it!

    When a plane is flying fast and low you simply don't hear it until you HEAR it. Effective in battle, and effective in making a horse think it's in battle - it's a rare (probably deaf) horse who won't react in some way, and some more explosively than others.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed


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  14. #14
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    It's not a question of conditioning to the specifics of a jet or helo (or big piston-slapper for that matter). It's a question of conditioning the horse to take its cues from the rider. If the rider flinches the horse will flinch. If the rider is "ho-hum" so will be the horse.

    At one competition in 2006 our area was a park adjacent to the airfield at Ft. Knox. One wall of our "outdoor stalls" was the airfield perimeter fence. We had all manner of military air traffic around and no incidents.

    If you can't replicate a jet you can still get lots of noise makers. Take your horses to places where there is lots of noise and lots of distractions. Ride near an interstate with lots of truck traffic. If nothing else to to a Cowboy Mounted Shoot.

    The rider's job is to acclimatize the horse to distractions. Be creative. You're horse will thank you for it. Eventually.

    G.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão



  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guilherme View Post
    It's not a question of conditioning to the specifics of a jet or helo (or big piston-slapper for that matter). It's a question of conditioning the horse to take its cues from the rider. If the rider flinches the horse will flinch. If the rider is "ho-hum" so will be the horse.

    At one competition in 2006 our area was a park adjacent to the airfield at Ft. Knox. One wall of our "outdoor stalls" was the airfield perimeter fence. We had all manner of military air traffic around and no incidents.

    If you can't replicate a jet you can still get lots of noise makers. Take your horses to places where there is lots of noise and lots of distractions. Ride near an interstate with lots of truck traffic. If nothing else to to a Cowboy Mounted Shoot.

    The rider's job is to acclimatize the horse to distractions. Be creative. You're horse will thank you for it. Eventually.

    G.
    You are making a LOT of assumptions here. I've been around a lot of people who have a horse at a boarding facility, but do not have horse trailers. They count on their trainer or friends at the barn to get rides to shows and clinics. They cannot take their horse to do many of the things you are suggesting. I' all for desensitizing a horse as much as possible and not placing them in bubble wrap, but your comments just show you are only able to view things from your own perspective and are unable to put yourself in other people's shoes for even the time it took to write your replies. I think you need a reality check and to watch pointing your finger.
    "Relinquish your whip!!"


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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velvet View Post
    You are making a LOT of assumptions here. I've been around a lot of people who have a horse at a boarding facility, but do not have horse trailers. They count on their trainer or friends at the barn to get rides to shows and clinics. They cannot take their horse to do many of the things you are suggesting. I' all for desensitizing a horse as much as possible and not placing them in bubble wrap, but your comments just show you are only able to view things from your own perspective and are unable to put yourself in other people's shoes for even the time it took to write your replies. I think you need a reality check and to watch pointing your finger.
    I'm stating a fact of life: the rider is responsible for the behavior of their horse.

    The fact that any given rider/owner might have limited opportunities for "desensitization" does not change the above principle. It might make it more difficult for them to carry out their duties, but they are not relieved of same.

    I'm not pointing a finger, I'm just stating a fact.

    G.
    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ButterflyIris View Post
    So - I've been at the last few global shows.
    For the rest of us not privy to these things....what is a "global" show ?
    -Amor vincit omnia-



  18. #18
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    Global is the new facility in Wellington off Peirson Road. It is the one that the Jacob family is fighting Bellisimo about. You can find a lot of press about the battle anywhere you look. The most recent and probably, to me, the most telling is the Boston,MA article.(both parties have interests and are from that area originally)
    I was present during one of the low fly bys in 2012 by a helicopter. There are several small private airfields nearby but this particular heilo was deliberately and repeatedly(circling) flying low over the International arena and warm up. This went on for at least two days before someone from show management asked anyone with cameras with long range lens to try to get a photo of the tail number. The fly bys stopped for the rest of the show.
    I was at a clinic, then show the same week at the same facility this year when the same thing occured.

    Out in White Fences, homeowners have helicopters and pads, fly in and out rather low as well on takeoff and landing. But those people do not "buzz" the showgrounds even though they pass right over it.

    There is a huge difference between the two events. One is very frightening even to GP horses, and the other is just producing tension.
    Maryanna Haymon- Marydell Farm - Home to Don Principe & Doctor Wendell MF
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    2012 USDF Champion Breeder! 2007, 2011 USEF Champ Breeder
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  19. #19
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    To me, the key difference is that "buzzing" is distinctly done with the intent to cause fear/upset or intimidate someone. There is sh*t happens, and there is intentionally being a twatwaffle/a**hole. You can desensitize your horse, but someone who is determined to cause a problem can and WILL find a way. Very, very few horses are well and truly desensitized to everything it's possible to encounter. You can teach them to take cues from you all you want, but eventually you might run into something that causes your horse to panic enough that their brain just isn't going to be able to take cues from you. No matter what you do, you still need to respect that horses are prey animals and they have instincts that you can't fully train out. Most horses aren't going to experience getting "buzzed" before they go in the ring, and let's be honest: that stuff still scares most HUMANS who aren't expecting it. I can definitely see why a horse would freak.


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  20. #20
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    I would think that if the 'buzzing' was truly done, it was intended to irritate not only the performers but the spectators, organizers and sponsors.

    Spooking horses is an unfortunate side effect.
    Proud scar wearing member of the Bold, Banned and Bitchen clique



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