Dangerous Drone

This site seeks to inform the public of the dangers and abuses related to the use of drones, model aircraft and RPAS for recreation.  It contains research gathered from multiple sources and asks important questions as well as exploring possible solutions to a challenging public safety issue.

Danger, Threats & Trespassing

In August 2020, a model jet flew directly over the neighbour’s head while on his own property; this jet came really close to the neighbouring resident and he could have easily been killed or gravely injured.  If this was not bad enough, the following actions of the Phelan RC Flying Club members show arrogance, entitlement and indifference to the neighbour’s who they endanger and abuse.

Note that this was a clear sunny day that would have been nice for a family to have enjoyed on their property if it was not for the presence of the RC flying club.  However, RC flying club members fly their loud dangerous aircraft on nice days so one can expect that living beside these clubs means that residents cannot enjoy life on their own property especially when the weather is nice.  It also means that one cannot simply allow their children to play outside on their own property because of the dangerous aircraft being operated at the RC flying club.  The club’s weathervane was hanging in the east position so one can be confident that the crash was not wind or weather related.

Before getting into the details, note that it is a violation of the MAAC rules to fly in the no-fly-zone.  Flying outside of the clubs site over neighbouring property is prohibited.

MSD 6 - General Category R/C Model Aircraft


5.9 No  member  shall  fly  a  model  directly over  pit  or  spectator  areas;  vessels;  vehicles;  and structures; no-fly zones  as  designated on the  club field  layout  or any other  areas  where there are people or emergency response personnel performing their duties.

Following the crash, members of the Phelan RC Flying Club were dispatched to search for the crashed jet on neighbouring property, south of Phelan road across the street from the club.

Next, the Phelan RC Flying club members started inspecting the neighbour’s tree line from his neighbour’s property.  Imagine sitting in the grass with one’s child on their property then see a stranger looking in on you from your neighbour’s property as he inspects your tree line, sound creepy?

The neighbour ran over to confront the man and find out what he was doing there.  Before the man walked back to the club, the conversation went as follows.

Neighbour: What can I do for you?

Club Member: Looking for something.

Neighbour: Yah, what for?

Club Member: Airplanes.

Neighbour: Yah, you think that is safe doing that beside us?

Club Member: Doing what?

Neighbour: Flying airplanes over us?

Club Member: Were not flying over you.

Neighbour: Yah you did

Club Member: I didn’t

Neighbour: Yah you did, you did

Club Member: Wasn’t me

Neighbour: Alright

Club Member: I don’t want to stand here so

 Neighbour: Ok sure, that is why you are on neighbouring property.

About 20 minutes later, founding club member Gerry Pronovost drove his car down the path of the neighbouring property inspecting the neighbour’s tree line.  When Gerry saw the neighbour taking pictures he told him to, “be good.”

After Gerry left, the operator of the crashed model jet approached the neighbour’s tree line from Phelan road, seeing the neighbour in his front yard and he called to him.  His name is J-C (Jean-Claude) Terrettaz and he identified himself after being asked a few times.  The name J-C Terrettaz may sound familiar; checkout the page on "Drinking and Flying" and note that this accident happened after lunch. 

First notice that J-C Terrettaz is holding the aircraft controller and note that the jet just flew over the neighbour.  J-C Terrettaz asked the neighbour about the plane and the neighbour confronted J-C Terrettaz about flying his jet over him.  The neighbour was careful not to provide any details about the crash other than it flew over the neighbour on his property.  It was a much longer conversation but it starts with J-C Terrettaz saying, “I Just, I'm looking, I want my plane, I wonder if it came to your place."  The neighbour responded, “What do you think?  You just flew right over us.” J-C Terrettaz says, “Yes?” The neighbour responded, “Yeah you flew right over us; right over me actually.”  J-C Terrettaz responded, “You know that's the problem like with our hobby sometime we are a...”  The point seemed to be that he wanted his plane back but he also said that the neighbour could keep it; which was confusing.  When the neighbour confronted him about the club being allowed to operate so close to residents, he made it clear that this club is not going anywhere but also mentioned that he may fly somewhere else next year.  He must not see the arrogance of asking for something back while telling the person that he almost killed that the club will continue.  Also, telling someone that they flew over them with a plane does not mean that the person has the plane.  J-C Terrettaz must not have understood that because he comes back.

Two days later, the neighbour left to go to a funeral of a loved one.  Only 15 minutes after leaving a RAV4 SUV drove down his driveway.  It appears that the operator of the crash jet waited for the neighbour to leave his property then trespass on his property while he was at a funeral!  Security footage shows the trespasser stopped beside a covered wood pile perhaps to see if the crashed jet was there.  Trespassing is a police matter and one would think that there would be MAAC rules posted prohibiting trespassing on neighbouring property to get crashed aircraft.

Is it not disgraceful that a neighbour who is almost hit by a club member’s jet, has to deal with club members trespassing while he is at a funeral?  This situation does not end here though; J-C Terrettaz comes back again looking for his plane.

Two more days pass and J-C (Jean-Claude) Terrettaz from the Phelan RC Flying Club again trespasses on the neighbours’ property.  This time the neighbour confronted him.  The neighbour told him to get off his property and that he is trespassing.  J-C (Jean-Claude) Terrettaz would not leave and replied that he wants the neighbour to tell him where his plane is.  J-C (Jean-Claude) Terrettaz made the following threats: "You don't want me to come with my friends to pick up my plane" and "You don't want me to come here with some other people to pick up my plane."   This is not the first time members of the Phelan RC Flying Club have gone on neighbour’s property and made threats.  Imagine someone coming onto your property making threats while your wife and child are inside.  What would you do?  A logical action is to have recorded everything and send it to enforcement agencies.

J-C Terrettaz: I want my plane.

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: Ok I will come with the police.

Neighbour: Get off of… Yes the police are going to be called.

J-C Terrettaz: Oh yeah, yeah.

Neighbour: Get off of my property right now.

J-C Terrettaz: Why you’re standing there...

Neighbour: Get off of my property right now.

J-C Terrettaz: Where is my plane?

Neighbour: Get the fuck off of my property right now.

J-C Terrettaz: Go fuck yourself first.

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: Where is my plane?

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: You don't want me to come with my friends to pick up my plane.

Neighbour: Excuse me

J-C Terrettaz: You don't want me to come here with some other people to pick up my plane because you have something that is mine.

Neighbour: Are you serious?

J-C Terrettaz: Yes I'm serious.

Neighbour: What's that mean tell me, what's that mean that you are going to come with your friends?

J-C Terrettaz: No, I will come here to pick up my plane, I want my plane back.

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: Give me my plane.

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: Oh esti! You know what, ça va pas fort là-dedans ok.

Neighbour: Oh yeah?

J-C Terrettaz: I'm glad mon avion n'est pas tombée chez toi et ça l’a brulé ton (structure)...

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: Ok Ok

Neighbour: You are trespassing.

J-C Terrettaz: I’m not trespassing, I am...

Neighbour: You are trespassing right now. Get the fuck off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: You know what you, you, you …

Neighbour: You guys don’t have the right to do that shit. Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: We have all the rights.

Neighbour: Get off of my property.

J-C Terrettaz: You don’t have the right to…

Neighbour: Get the fuck off of the property.

J-C Terrettaz: You can just scream as much as you want I don’t care

Neighbour: Call the police now 911

J-C Terrettaz: 911 of course 911

Notice that J-C Terrettaz says the word “brulé” which means burn as he points to the neighbour’s house.  What was he trying to say?  Why is the trespassing member of the Phelan RC Flying Club pointing to the neighbour’s house saying, “burn” and in what context is that acceptable?  If he is saying he is glad it did not burn the house then doesn’t that imply that if his jet had hit the house he thinks it would burn it down?  If that is the case then, why operate an RC jet in a location that could burn a family’s house down?

What makes an RC flying club member think he has the right to endanger the neighbours, trespass on neighbouring property and make threats?  When an RC flying club wants to establish a new club should the neighbouring residents expect this kind of abuse?

The fact is, no one said that his plane was here nor is it the responsibility of the neighbour to tell someone who endangers his life where the plane went.  Why would a neighbour who wants nothing to do with the RC aircraft hobby want with an RC jet aircraft anyway?  How is it that the operator of the aircraft seems to have no idea where his plane went?

Unfortunately, the trouble does not end there.  Following this confrontation, it seemed that the club made sure to fly their loud giant scale planes as often as possible and continued to fly over the neighbouring property.

One wonders if the people in the RC aircraft hobby condone this behavior.  Are people from the hobby proud of what is happening here?   Is this an exceptionally abusive RC flying club or are there other clubs like this who rent a small lot and bully the neighbours?  The hobby is granted an exemption by Transport Canada given that the rules are followed and that it is in the best interest of Canadians.  Obviously, this is not in the best interest of Canadians so why is it allowed to continue?  Is it not time for the Phelan RC Flying Club to be forced to close so that the neighbouring residents can finally live in peace and safety?