The Nu Rally recently staged a supercar journey to Monterey Car Week. Videos from the drive show wild flying by a helicopter following them. It looks dangerous and potentially illegal without having the proper permits.
The video below shows a white helicopter following several supercars on a canyon road. The aircraft sometimes seems to be only around 10 feet off the ground. At certain points, the chopper's blades appear close to striking the hillside and trees.
Another video shows the same helicopter hovering just a few feet above a Lamborghini. One of the skids is actually below the raised door's height.
Nu Rally charged $1,000 for taking part in the drive to Monterey Car Week. Each entrant was able to bring a guest. There were light snacks at the start and a lunch. A decal and clothing was included, too. There was a "full security escort to Monterey." The page also lists "Air Support," but it's unclear whether that references this helicopter.
The Federal Aviation Administration has very specific rules for operating aircraft, known as the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR). Specifically, §91.119 covers minimum safe altitudes other than when taking off or landing. The rule says a helicopter must be "1,000 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal radius of 2,000 feet of the aircraft" in congested areas like towns or cities. The distance drops to 500 feet of altitude and 500 feet horizontally from "any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure."
The second video appears to show the helicopter far lower than 500 feet and much closer than 500 feet from any obstacles. However, the FAA offers a waiver of this rule. It includes attaching a "properly marked" topographic map of the area where the flight is taking place. A person must provide these documents 45 days before the date of the event. We don't have any info about whether or not this pilot filed the proper paperwork.
A commenter to the first video above claims there's an open complaint with the FAA about this incident. Motor1.com reached out to the federal agency about this, but we haven't yet received a response at the time of this story's publication.