UAS mishap data (Department of Defense, Office of the Secretary of Defense)

Shawn Musgrave filed this request with the Department of Defense, Office of the Secretary of Defense of the United States of America.
Tracking # 14-F-0190
Est. Completion None
Status
No Responsive Documents

Communications

From: Shawn Musgrave

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

Data supplied by the Department of Defense of "unmanned aerial systems mishap data."

This transfer of data is indicated on page 11 of the January 2013 report, "Department of Defense Report to Congress on Addressing Challenges for Unmanned Aircraft Systems": http://www.defenseinnovationmarketplace.mil/resources/2012AnnualTF-Report.pdf

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Shawn Musgrave

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Mr. Shawn Musgrave
MuckRock News
DEPT MR 9266
PO Box 55819
Boston, MA 02205-5819

Sent via email to: requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Musgrave:

This is in response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for "Data supplied by the Department of Defense of 'unmanned aerial systems mishap data.'"

Your request has been misdirected to this office. Please note that this office only processes FOIA requests for the Office of Secretary of Defense and the Joint Staff (OSD/JS). There is not a central FOIA processing point for the entire Department of Defense (DoD) records management, but is, instead, delegated to those officials of the military services and various DoD components that generate and/or maintain the records being sought.

The records you seek, if they exist, are most likely with the Air Force. Accordingly, we suggest that you write to the Air Force Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act Office and direct any questions to that office at the following address:

Secretary of the Air Force/AAII (FOIA)
1000 Air Force Pentagon
Washington, DC 20330-1000
Email: haf.foia@pentagon.af.mil
Fax: (703) 693-5728
http://www.af.mil/foia.asp.

Accordingly, your request will be closed in this office.

If you are not satisfied with this action, you may submit an administrative appeal to James Hogan, Defense Freedom of Information Policy Office, 1155 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-1155. Your appeal should be postmarked within 60 calendar days of the date of this letter, should cite to case number 14-F-0200, and should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act Appeal."

Sincerely,

Charles Marye
FOIA Analyst
For Suzanne Council on behalf of
Paul Jacobsmeyer, Chief, Office Freedom of Information
OSD FOIA OFFICE
(571) 372-0407

From: Shawn Musgrave

Mr. Marye:

Thank you for your response. I do not believe I misdirected this request, as I assume that the OSD coordinates the bulk of data sharing with other agencies such as the FAA, particularly since multiple DoD components (i.e., Air Force, Army, Navy) are all using UAVs.

Please perform a search in the OSD files for data for the named subjects that has been shared with the FAA.

Best,
Shawn

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Dear Shawn Musgrave: This is an interim response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request dated November 24, 2013, which was received in this office on November 25, 2013.  Your request has been assigned case number 14-F-0190 and we ask that you use that number when referring to your request. With regard to your request for a waiver of any applicable fees, a fee waiver is appropriate when "disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations and activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester." 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(4)(iii) In making a determination, six factors are considered as to whether your request satisfies this statutory standard: (1) whether the subject of the requested records concerns the operations or activities of the government; (2) whether the disclosure is likely to contribute to an understanding of government operations or activities; (3) whether disclosure of the requested information will contribute to the understanding of the general public; (4) whether the disclosure is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of government operations and activities; (5) whether the requester has a commercial interest that would be furthered by the requested disclosure; and, (6) whether any such commercial interest outweighs the public interest in disclosure.
While the requested information does concern the operations and activities of the government and does not appear to be intended for a commercial interest, it is not clear how the responsive documents - should they exist - would significantly contribute to the public understanding of the operations and activities of the government. After carefully reviewing your request I am denying your fee waiver request because the information stated does not support how the documents will significantly contribute to the public's increased understanding of the operations and activities of government.
Please be aware that we reserve the right to grant a fee waiver should a search find documents that meet the criterion of a public interest fee waiver as described in the previous paragraph.
I have determined that you should be placed in the "other" category for fee purposes as you have indicated that you do not seek access to these records for commercial purposes. The "other" fee category affords you two hours of search time and 100 pages of duplication free of charge. As you did not provide any willingness to pay, search will be halted after your two free hours have been expended. If you wish to add a willingness to pay, please contact the action officer assigned to your request at your earliest convenience.
We will be unable to respond to your request within the FOIA’s 20 day statutory time period as there are unusual circumstances which impact on our ability to quickly process your request.  These unusual circumstances are:  (a) the need to search for and collect records from a facility geographically separated from this Office; (b) the potential volume of records responsive to your request; and (c) the need for consultation with one or more other agencies or DoD components having a substantial interest in either the determination or the subject matter of the records.  For these reasons, your request has been placed in our complex processing queue and will be worked in the order the request was received.  Our current administrative workload is 1627 open requests.
If you would like to discuss how to limit your request in order to speed the processing time, we would be pleased to discuss how you might modify your request.  The action officer assigned to your request is Charles Marye at (571) 372-0407. The toll free number for this Office is 866-574-4970. You may not be aware that we maintain a website and electronic reading room at: http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi/ If you are not satisfied with this action, you may appeal to the appellate authority, the Director of Administration and Management, Office of the Secretary of Defense, by writing directly to the Defense Freedom of Information Policy Office, Attn: Mr. James Hogan, 1155 Defense Pentagon, Washington, D.C. 20301-1155. Your appeal should be postmarked within 60 calendar days of the date of this letter, should cite the case number 14-F-0190, and should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act Appeal."
Please note your case has been reopened and has been tasked to a component as requested.
Sincerely, Charles Marye Office of Freedom of Information
Department of Defense
1155 Defense Pentagon
Washington, DC 20301-1155
FAX: (571) 372-0500

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 23, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #14-F-0190.

Thank you for your help.

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Sir,

Your final response to this request was sent via mail approximately 12/24/13.

Sincerely,

Charles Marye
OSD FOIA OFFICE
(571) 372-0407

From: Shawn Musgrave

It was not received. Please resend?

Thank you,
Shawn

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Sir,

Attached is a scanned copy of the final response to your request. I am sorry it did not arrive by mail.

Charles Marye
OSD FOIA OFFICE
(571) 372-0407

From: Shawn Musgrave

Hello,

I will submit requests to the components indicated, but as I understand the division of labor within DoD, it would seem that the OSD would need to approve such a data transfer as was indicated in the cited report from FY2012:

"DoD provided the FAA with 6 years ofUAS mishap data, allowing the FAA to
have a better understanding ofUAS safety considerations to support increased
NAS access decisions."

Can you please confirm that no inter-departmental liaison handled this data transfer?

Thank you for your help.

Best,
Shawn

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Mr. Musgrave,

Under the FOIA a government agency is required to make a good faith effort to conduct a search. This office coordinated an exhaustive search within AT&L. Our search process involved speaking with Freedom of Information Act Officials, records managers, and other points of contact that might have been in possession of responsive documents. Searches of the paper files, electronic files and databases as well as files transferred to storage were performed.

Please be advised that based on the information you have provided and thorough searches of the paper, electronic and archived records and files of AT&L, no documents of the kind you described could be located. We believe that these search methods were appropriate and could reasonably be expected to produce the requested records if they existed.

In order to sustain a "no records" finding an agency must show that it made a good faith effort to conduct a search for the requested records, using methods that could reasonably be expected to produce the information requested. A search is not presumed unreasonable simply because it fails to produce all relevant materials. As well, FOIA does not require agencies to create or compile records not already in existence to satisfy a FOIA request.

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is not an investigative arm, nor can it respond to your various questions. The FOIA only provides you the right to request documents from specific documents, records and files and after receipt of that information, you must then draw your own conclusions, and take action as appropriate.

Requesters may appeal any determination that they consider to be adverse. As we set out previously, if you are not satisfied with this action, you may appeal to the appellate authority, the Director of Administration and Management, Office of the Secretary of Defense, by writing directly to the Defense Freedom of Information Policy Office, Attn: Mr. James Hogan, 1155 Defense Pentagon, Washington, D.C. 20301-1155. Your appeal should be postmarked within 60 calendar days of the date of this letter, should cite to case number 14-F-0190, and should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act Appeal."

Respectfully,

Charles Marye
OSD FOIA OFFICE
(571) 372-0407

From: Shawn Musgrave

Mr. Marye,

I respectfully object to the adequacy of the search. I never indicated that the search be limited to AT&L, although as the parent agency of the UAS Taskforce I would, of course, assume that AT&L does, in fact, hold the requested database. Further, AT&L is the precise agency which reported to Congress that DoD had transferred the data to the FAA.

I have more than adequately described the cirumstances that resulted in the creaiton of the requested document. As such, the FOIA statute requires you to use your knowledge of the agency to search for the requested document in the office(s) and component(s) of the agency which are likely to have possession of the document. Unless the cited report is incorrect and AT&L provided incorrect information to Congress, you have not conducted an adequate search.

Respectfully,
Shawn

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 23, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #14-F-0190.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Nov. 23, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #14-F-0190.

Thank you for your help.

From: Marye, Charles C CIV WHS ESD (US)

Sir,

We already responded, copy attached. Please turn off your auto-generated request for status.
Sincerely,

Charles Marye
OSD FOIA OFFICE
(571) 372-0407

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