CHARLOTTE, NC (WJZY) - To give you an idea of the FAA rules for pilots, they say you have to be 1,000 feet from the ground and 2,000 away from any buildings. What sounds good on paper, looks completely different once you're up in the air which is where FOX 46 Charlotte spent the afternoon Wednesday.
FOX 46 Charlotte took to the skies with Alpha One Air Service Pilot Gary Moore. He’s been flying for more than 15 years and is a Certified Flight Instructor. Alpha One Air Service is a flight training center and FAA approved testing center, so they know the rules.
After seeing the video, Moore said the A-10’s could be breaking the rules.
"Maybe it was 500, maybe a 1,000, maybe it was 1,200 but they looked awfully low," Moore said.
Moore said for anyone to fly close to an area like Uptown Charlotte, they have to get clearance and make sure they aren't interfering with any other aircraft in the area.
In fact these guidelines are so strict, we even had to ask permission two more times while in the air.
"This is the first time ever you have been able to go around,” FOX 46 Charlotte's Yolian Ortiz said.
“That close to downtown, that's right,” Moore said.
"It’s tough to do because there are those corridors that are going straight to the airport, you can see how close it is from here, downtown, to the airport, over there,” Ortiz said.
Moore said the only time exceptions are made to the rules are when pilots have emergencies.
"If a pilot has an emergency he can break a rule to safely satisfy an emergency but that's if there's an emergency," Moore said.
While perhaps the rules for clearance in high populated areas, like Charlotte, are a little more clear, the four pilots are now restricted from flight duties pending the investigation.