Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

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mpallamary
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby mpallamary » Sat Oct 14, 2017 12:24 pm

Wow!

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mpallamary
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby mpallamary » Sat Oct 14, 2017 12:33 pm

Tom, Years ago I wrote an article about the San Francisco earthquake. GIS was in its nascent stages. I worked with CALTRANS and other agencies for the article. They gave me copies and access to lots of material. We have come a long way. Check out the attached. I wrote a couple of articles about earthquakes and lectured quite a bit on the topic. ESRI gave me a copy of one of their first GIS programs in the hopes the article would promote the use of GIS.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

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TTaylor
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby TTaylor » Sat Oct 14, 2017 1:18 pm

Thanks, Mike, I will read it later when I have a good clear time to enjoy it.

The reason I proposed, and CLSA supported the revision to 8726 with the addition of subsection (n) was to mark out the land surveyor's role around GIS. We wrote it in a way that has a big hammer in other circumstances.

If only it were used.....Que Lastima

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mpallamary
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby mpallamary » Sat Oct 14, 2017 2:19 pm

No kidding my friend! You know what would be a great, if not wonderful thing, would be for CLSA to have an old-fashioned conference where one entire day, if not more, were spent discussing and debating various topics of interest and concern to the profession. From this, the ENTIRE association could provide direction and participate in guiding the association moving forward. This would allow the membership to weigh in on subjects like this one.

Perchance to dream.

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DWoolley
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby DWoolley » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:03 pm

Rob_LS (McMillan) states:

DWooley – Again, Identify what code section are they violating, and file a complaint. Venting on this forum does nothing to improve the state of our profession, or our relationship with our licensing board whose members and staff go to great lengths to help our profession, while protecting the public. Worse, some of our colleagues who are less informed about BPELSG processes and activities may actually think you are right that BPELSG staff is not doing their job, which is about as far from the truth as it can get.”

I disagree with your characterization on the use of the forum. In fact, I believe the forum is precisely the right location for everyone interested to voice their individual experience and opinion (“venting”) - as you have done. It certainly encourages active participation from the members throughout the state. Contrary to your assertion, I believe these discussions work towards improving our profession.

For the readers, Rob McMillan is the CLSA liaison to BPELSG. He attends their meetings, hosting the last meeting, and prepares well written and detailed reports for the CLSA Board of Directors. Before I go further, I am kindly asking you to educate me, collectively us, on the good work of the BPELSG staff. Please expound on and share your knowledge of BPELSG to enlighten me and fellow forum readers. Thank you in advance.

Begin Six Questions

Following up on your post, please provide us with more details on:

1. Referring to the BPELSG staff, provide examples of the “great lengths to help our profession”.

2. You provided us the numbers related to the opening and the closing of cases by the BPELSG staff – thank you; however, my interest rests in the disposition of the cases. Of the total number of land surveying specific cases closed (total average of the 351 over 3 years – according to your post), please provide the following adjudication information:

a. How many cases resulted in a citation?

b. What was the average amount of the fines?

c. Presuming the citation included a fine – how many of those that were fined actually paid their fine?

d. How many cases resulted in revocation?

e. How does the BPELSG staff track and follow up on the orders for the active probation folks? Also, do any of these folks on probation “slip through the cracks”?

Bonus question, are those working days or calendar days to resolve the cases cited?

End Six Questions

I can appreciate the time it took for you to write the number of cases opened and closed. The mere closing of cases means little to nothing to me, simply cases were closed – the information you will provide will tell us the rest of the story (hat tip, Paul Harvey). Ideally, providing the necessary facts will support your claims and dispelling my notions on the enforcement program.

A Brief Intermission Story

One of my critics, which you have clearly determined is misplaced, is the BPELSG staff simply practices catch and release – which really doesn’t serve the public or the professional community well. For example, the filing of a complaint is something most folks do not take lightly. I have had many lengthy discussions, with many practitioners, helping them get over the psychological barrier to filing a complaint. More often than not, when BPELSG staff investigates and sends their warning letter, these would be future complainers, after waiting years, are completely and thoroughly demoralized. When you say “file a complaint” know that it isn’t easy for most folks and the BPELSG staff makes it harder. It is even worse for those demoralized folks to hear BPELSG staff (or you) solicit complaints after having vested themselves emotionally for several years, hoping to improve the professional community, only to see their complaint washed.

A license doesn't come with a set of training wheels. Once licensed, we are required to know everything specific to our area of competence - this is one purpose of the license. Practicing according to the law is not a training exercise - the law is only 21 pages with only 7-8 pages of meat and potatoes. It is unacceptable to not know or understand the law. It is not the licensing board's job to teach a licensee about the minimum standard of practice after he has broken the law -unless the lesson is taught by citation, fine and probation. In my experience, the scofflaws break the law daily, for years, before they are reported. Similar to most drunk drivers, they seldom get pulled over. Unlike drunk drivers, these folks are told to "next time, drive sober and have a nice day". The next complaint puts him back in the rotation for another couple years of waiting while the honest business, filing surveys and searching for more two monuments, feels the pressure. Meanwhile, the years tick by and the drunk driver simply changes his driving route - chalking the experience up to bad luck.

In our area, the folks that get complaints filed are often the worst of the worst. As I mentioned in another post, we have a fellow that has 5 resolved complaints – by his testimony under oath. I have four contracts which do not even closely follow the law – even though he was cited as recently as 2014 for failure to follow the law on his contracts. Yes, each of the contracts I have post date his citation. This fellow had 111 no reference monuments, spread out over 70+ projects, which was reported to BPELSG. He was cited and paid a $4000 fine. He was not required to file the maps. I sat through his deposition recently. My client, being only one of the four parties, is between $200k-$300k into litigation cost over the last three years because of this guy. Who was their “expert”? Another guy I turned in a several years ago – he was cited and appealed because he has surveyed his entire career this way. He is as incompetent, not negligent, today as he was then. He makes his living in semi-retirement as an expert, laughably. The attorneys on the other side caught one whiff of him, fired. They cannot find another “expert” for the other side. Someone, anyone please tell me again about protecting the public?


Back to You Rob McMillan


I have a hard time believing the complaint I filed in 2013 and settled September 2017 is only case they had with the aging – according to your post. In fact, it was reported to me this complaint was coupled with other complaints dating back to 2007. Imagine, just for a moment, a full 25% of a long professional career spent waiting to know the disposition of a complaint against your license or a complaint filed against someone an honest business has to compete against.

I await and welcome your responses to my handful of very specific questions – which should clearly make your point and ideally, show my criticism is misplaced. By the way, do not mention their “outreach”. Although it may be useful in completing the application to test - my experience is it does little to nothing to stem bad practice.

Please let me and the forum readers know what it is that you know by providing us with real enforcement numbers that matter by answering the questions asked. I appreciate your time and consideration in answering the six questions posed.

DWoolley

khuerth
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby khuerth » Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:53 pm

I have recently come across a company offering "drone surveying" their website lists aerial surveys along with accuracy claims, but they don't employ a PLS. I have never filed a complaint to the board, the forms online seem to want a lot of information. All I have is a website and a brief email exchange with an employee of the company. If I fill out the minimal information I have, is that enough for the board to proceed? As a young PLS and drones being my generations GPS, I would like to protect my future.

Thanks, Kyle Huerth

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rmaher
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby rmaher » Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:44 pm

khuerth wrote:...I have never filed a complaint to the board, the forms online seem to want a lot of information. All I have is a website and a brief email exchange with an employee of the company. If I fill out the minimal information I have, is that enough for the board to proceed?


The Joint Professional Practices and Legislative Committee (JPPLC) of the OC 'Practice Based' Chapter of CLSA and ACEC is exactly the group to help you with this.

Foremost, they have no boundaries. They are willing to help you regardless of your geographic location in the state or your chapter affiliation. Like you they share a concern that is 'practice based' which is why the chapter counts so many surveyors out of the headquarter's county, state, and even country as members.

The committee will help you review the issue, prepare the complaint, and if you would like, file it on your behalf.

A brief description of the committee is here: http://oc-surveyors.org/jpplc/

Please contact the chairs and co-chairs of the committee with this email address [url]jpplc@oc-surveyors.org[/url] and I can assure you one of those three will help you out.
Take care,

Rich

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land butcher
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby land butcher » Mon Oct 23, 2017 1:28 pm

Rob LS
Yeah, I missed that conference, along with a few others.

The last official articles I read, earlier this year, all stated that a drone operator using the drone to produce income was subject to stringent FAA rules, regs and licensing, and one article noted that Lieca I believe was getting the authorization to issue sub licenses to users of their products.

To date I have not seen any official FAA statements where they will allow anyone to do their own drone aerial photography.
The FAA cites things as privacy, flight patterns, other aircraft, security areas, etc.

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land butcher
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby land butcher » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:02 pm

A article in the new edition of POB covers commercial use of drones. You need to pass the FAA Part 107 exam cost of $150 and renew every 2 years. Of course flight plans will have to be submitted and approved.
Good short article to read.

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E_Page
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby E_Page » Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:41 pm

khuerth wrote:I have recently come across a company offering "drone surveying" their website lists aerial surveys along with accuracy claims, but they don't employ a PLS. I have never filed a complaint to the board, the forms online seem to want a lot of information. All I have is a website and a brief email exchange with an employee of the company. If I fill out the minimal information I have, is that enough for the board to proceed? As a young PLS and drones being my generations GPS, I would like to protect my future.

Thanks, Kyle Huerth



Kyle,

Sometimes a business provides enough in their web content to prompt the Board into action. Several years ago, I ran across a website of someone offering various surveying and design services on his website. This person had been contracted by a county agency I used to work for to perform surveying and design and I knew that he had neither a LS or PE license at that time. A quick verification through license lookup on the BPELSG site verified he was still unlicensed.

I emailed the (then) enforcement manager for BPELSG, giving her the website and the individual's name. I was contacted by a BPELSG investigator (not a retained technical expert) a week or so later to check on some details. I checked a couple of weeks later and noticed that the website had been taken down. I don't know if that individual faced any other consequences, as he should have, but at least he was no longer advertising his "services" online.

The quick response from BPELSG to assign an investigator and shut down the website was encouraging. I didn't see his name among the Final Orders of Decisions posted on the BPELSG site when I looked through them several months later, and that was disappointing as, IMO, he provided enough self incrimination in the form of describing his involvement in past projects to make verification by an investigator quite easy and warrant some stiff fines. I'll check again when I have time and hope his name is there, associated with some stiff penalties.
Evan Page, PLS
A Certain Forum Essayist

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Anthony Maffia
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby Anthony Maffia » Tue Nov 28, 2017 1:00 pm

I suggest you revise your signature as follows:

Evan Page, PLS
A Professional Forum Poster
- Anthony Maffia, LSIT

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everstudy
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Re: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Land Surveying Practice in California

Postby everstudy » Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:33 pm

Hoping to wake this topic up.

"Is flying the drone also surveying? Is that now the purview of only union surveyors at a signatory firm or under the umbrella of prevailing wage?"

At companies that are union, are only the field crews allowed to fly the drones or can a non-union, office PLS fly the drones as well?


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