Ray's Kite Flying Tips

 Ray Bethell Multiple Kite World Champion
 Common Sense Rules

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Basic Rules of Kite Flying
  • Never fly your kite around power lines.
    Power lines can be deadly. A jolt of electrical juice flowing through your body to the ground can be a life threatening ordeal. Stay well away from power lines.

  • Never fly your kite during an electrical storm.
    Remember Ben Franklin? Electricity going through two lines completes a circuit that goes right through the heart. You can bet that it wouldn't feel very good -- if you live through it.

  • Never fly a kite over or near people or animals.
    Flying kites over people or animals can startle them and can give people the impression that kite fliers are irresponsible. Yes, we all know that dogs are great fun to watch chasing your kite but sooner or later the wind is going to drop while you're flying and the dog will get your kite... Fly high in the window until people and animals are clear the area.

  • Never fly your kite near an airport.
    In most places around the world, flying near an airport is against the law. Most places in North America prohibit kite flying within 3-5 miles of an airport. If you're not sure if a flying location is acceptable, contact the airport administrators and ask them.

  • Wear eye protection on sunny days.
    Long exposure to the sun's UV rays can cause permanent damage to unprotected eyes. Always wear sunglasses when flying on sunny days even if you're not directly facing the sun. And don't forget to apply sunscreen to protect your skin as well.

  • Always stand on solid ground
    Loose gravel and wet grass can be very slippery and hazardous. A fall while holding a kite in the air could cause personal injury. Wear appropriate footwear for the ground conditions -- at Kites on Ice in Madison, Wisconsin, flyers wear crampons to keep them from sliding.

  • Stay down wind from sidewalks and paths.
    Always make certain that you've got at least twenty feet behind you in case you need to back up when the wind drops. It could be disasterous if you accidentally backed in to a passing cyclist or pedestrian. It could also cause possible confrontations as Ray once found out.

  • Make sure that your flying area is clear of obstacles.
    Obviously, you'll want to make sure that there is nothing in front of you that might damage your kite if you crash in to it. Also check the area around you for items or holes in the sand or ground that could cause you to trip or fall.

  • Never fly your kite over or near a roadway.
    Imagine someone driving their car as a kite zips past nearby and distracts or startles them. It could cause an accident and you could possibly be sued for contributing to the cause. Roads are for vehicles. Parks and beaches are for kites.

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