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View Full Version : FBO's why are they hostile to spotters/photographers



microlight
03-18-2008, 04:47 PM
Just about to embark on a vacation to the US.

Not in the NYC area but in the southeast region.

It's normal practice for us Brits to enquire about photo restrictions at civil facilities prior to pitching up and going "hunting".

Why oh why are your bizjet FBO's so anti enthusiast , I've written to a good few now politely enquiring about public area viewing etc and the response has been so negative its close to paranoia.
I've been told in advance not to point my camera at certain aircraft parking ramps - arent these airports public places ??? in the UK it is perfectly okay to photograph anything from or whilst standing on public property such as a road or footpath without let or hindrance , is it not the same in the US ?

Sorry to say but having visited the US more than 8 times , as regards our hobby over a period of 17 years it is getting worse , it used to be the best destination for our hobby.

It's still our favourite vacation location , and as ALLIES with the same views - sometimes difficult to understand the change in attitude thats going against our hobby and any chance of carrying it out without getting hassle or non co-operation from airfield tenants.

Bet they wouldn't mind if I pitched up in an aeroplane !:(

lijk604
03-18-2008, 05:31 PM
It's more about "passenger secrecy" The last thing a CEO (or elected official) wants is to be photographed getting off a private aircraft with a member of the opposite sex who is not related to them, nor works for them. Others do not want the public to know they are flying on a private jet, or which one. It is paranoia, it is well over-blown, but a lot of it stems from Sept 11 2001. It shouldn't, but it does, and its sad.

markg
03-19-2008, 02:00 PM
Obviously you never incurred the wrath of the Metro Aviation FBO at LHR years ago, or more recently Signature at LTN :roll: Next time your at LTN, watch how quickly they close the doors after pulling an aircraft in or out.

It happens in the UK too, it's not just here in the US. There are many FBO's in the US that are friendly to spotters, however they tend to be the smaller local companies, and not the larger multi-national ones.

microlight
03-19-2008, 04:17 PM
lijk604/markg

Thanks for the replies - its total paranoia and overkill with some of the attitudes you come across

Yes your right about the smaller ones , the larger ones could certainly learn a thing or two from them !! like PR and common sense :roll:

flyboy 28
03-19-2008, 04:46 PM
The FBO at KABE has always been very accommodating with me, letting me go out on the ramp to shoot departures. All they asked is that I don't shoot the N-number.

Neilos1uk
10-13-2009, 07:13 PM
Hi to all,my first posting to what i must say is an excellent site,having visited the U.S many,many times over the last 17 years,and with three visits planned for next year,it has been very noticeable how various FBO's have become so "anti spotter"its absolutely ridiculous.I can remember many years ago being allowed onto a ramp run by Banyan Aviation at Fort Lauderdale exec,(still operating?,i'm not sure)with a Columbian AF Learjet parked on the ramp!!,not sure it would happen nowadays.Signature have,in my experience have always been hostile,and now they are spreading their wings in the UK things are no better.Myself i'm not interested in who gets on/off corporate jets,but try telling the police/security services that.There used to be a guy based at White Plains called Bob Weinwurzel(great guy) who worked for Seagrams,who had worked for Phillip Morris at Teterboro before they moved up country,who on being contacted would give you an escorted tour of the facillites,he would take you on board Grummans,125's all sorts.Again cant see that happening nowadays.

All the best

Neil Harris..

Matt Molnar
10-13-2009, 08:11 PM
Welcome aboard, Neil!

Neilos1uk
10-13-2009, 08:18 PM
Many thanks,hope to post as much as i can ...

Neil...

T-Bird76
10-13-2009, 09:58 PM
lijk604/markg

Thanks for the replies - its total paranoia and overkill with some of the attitudes you come across

Yes your right about the smaller ones , the larger ones could certainly learn a thing or two from them !! like PR and common sense :roll:

Neil, John is on point with what he says about secrecy and the privacy that FBO managers wish to maintain for their customers. We had an situation on JP.net where an FBO asked us to take a number of pictures down because the photog shot the faces of the people in the planes and apparently some of the owners had some "issues" with being seen. We left the issue between the photog and the FBO.

markg
10-14-2009, 06:20 PM
Neil

Banyan are still at FXE and still as friendly as ever, but no ramp tours any more!

Mark

nyslides
09-06-2012, 09:13 PM
There used to be a guy based at White Plains called Bob Weinwurzel (great guy) who worked for Seagrams, who had worked for Philip Morris at Teterboro before they moved up country,who on being contacted would give you an escorted tour of the facillites, he would take you on board Grummans, 125's all sorts. Again cant see that happening nowadays.

Neil Harris..

I know Bob well - he is indeed a great guy. He's no longer working for a flight department, but an International Trip Support company. Any messages for him? I'd be happy to relay.

skyteam18
09-08-2012, 06:11 PM
I use to work at an FBO and when I was there, no one cared if I was out taking pictures. "N Numbers?... pft, we don't care. snap away as long as it's off the clock"... But I went back 5 years later they treated me like a terrorist. "Sir, you can't go out on the ramp. You will have to take pictures from outside the property. Why are you wanting to take pictures?"

It's the post 9/11 paranoia.

PhilDernerJr
09-08-2012, 06:37 PM
I've worked hands-on with VIP charters and can tell you that when security guards do it, a majority of it is little more than a power trip. People whose job it is to keep a perimeter secure, with no real threats, and then taking it all out on someone with a camera since there's nothing else to do.

Must they protect the privacy of the VIP? Sure. But boundaries are often overstepped. The only time I've ever asked photographers to move was when they were in the way. I've had to tell coworkers to stop and relax when they wanted to go stop those dastardly photographers.

Chris102
09-29-2012, 02:24 PM
I've never had a problem with FBO's. I've had FBO workers stare at me for a few seconds, but I've never been approached by anyone while taking photos.

In the past, I've had encounters with the FBO people at AVP and SWF and both were very nice. In both 2005 and 2006, people at AVP allowed me in a hanger to get photos of VH-3D's. Around 2007/2008, I had a similar experience at SWF when two guys from Atlantic Aviation took me in a hanger to see the Trump 727. I wasn't allowed to take photos of VP-BDJ, but I was still extremely grateful to those guys for giving me the opportunity to see it up close--they didn't have to do that. (The reason I couldn't take photos that day was because according to these guys, someone at Atlantic got fired for allowing a reporter to record a stand-up with N31TR in the background. The owner saw it on the news and didn't like the fact that the reporter got so close.)

Like others have said, I've found that generally the small, non-chain FBO's are friendlier than the bigger ones.

bizjets101
02-17-2013, 08:24 AM
I know Bob well - he is indeed a great guy. He's no longer working for a flight department, but an International Trip Support company. Any messages for him? I'd be happy to relay.

Rob (Roy) Reid CYYZ I used to trade 35mm slides of bizjets with him in the 70's - he worked at KTEB on the Ramp for Atlantic - then went to Phillip Morris flight department.

I worked at CYYZ on the biz ramp for Skycharter and Innotech Aviation.

Just say Hi - ask him if he has any bizjet photos online, if not, talk him into it!!!, he'll have one of the best bizjet collections anywhere!!!

[email protected]
https://twitter.com/bizjet101

Thanks Rob

adscram14
02-17-2013, 11:47 AM
I've talked to the guys at my local FBO--I think it is more the pilots being uneasy than the FBO itself. If there is a plane at Wilson Air (KCLT FBO), I park, walk up to the fence, take some pictures, and leave. Sometimes they have employees working right there and they give a glace and a wave and move on.

I think it just depends on the FBO.

MarkLawrence
02-17-2013, 12:58 PM
A great deal depends on the FBO, the staff of the FBO and the relationship with the owners. I have a friend who is a GM on a FBO at FLL - I have basically unlimited access to the FBO and the ramp. It's not a privilege that is abused at all - I tend to go when there is lots to shoot or something special in - but - whenever I go - the staff are incredible - and - will tell me - don't shoot that now, etc. Relationships like that can be built....

tlabranche
02-17-2013, 09:29 PM
I have encountered FBO operators who just ask that you don't shoot a plane while it has passengers near it.