Drone flying on airports

12 Replies

Drone flying on airports

Posted by Harold Downes on Jul 24, 2017 10:45 pm

Recently, a recreational drone flyer told the airport mangagement that he was going to fly his drone at our airport (non-towered).  He assumed that was contact enough and he flew his device at night over our runway and taxiway.    Since then he has flown again after legal nightfall and says he will continue because he can and there are no rules to stop him.
This person is flaunting his drone in our face and we dread they day he hits one of our aircraft.   
My question is this:  is there anything we can do to prohibit this persons flying "on our airport".    The rules only seem to address withing the vicinity of an airport.
We don't allow RC aircraft on the airport, why can't we prohibit drones?
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Re: Drone flying on airports

Posted by Lauren Mcgavran on Aug 21, 2017 10:31 am

Ronald Levy:

Unless that guy has such an exemption in writing from the FAA, that exception does not apply.


I disagree with you here. This exemption says that applicable drones are model aircraft and gives them the same operating leeway. If your statement is correct, all model aiorplanes would need written exemptions. I don't think that they do.

Re: Drone flying on airports

Posted by Kathleen Swain on Aug 25, 2017 1:21 pm

Whether hobbyists or commercial drone pilots, we need to act as ambassadors for our flying. For hobbyists, if operating as such, they fall under Public Law (Section 336) and are to follow the safety guidelines from the FAA as outlined; however under Part 101 they are subject to enforcement action from the FAA if they become a safety issue and/or interfere with manned flight. 
The airport owner can prohibit them from take off/landing on their land if private or written rules for public, but when it comes to airspace, that is a federal area currently.

Personally, I try to help educate the hobbyist on safe practices. I have recommended a lot of online training resources to my friends, but if that fails and this hobbyist is a hazard, then that person's activities should be reported to the FSDO as we would in any case (manned or unmanned). When I come upon a hobbyist operating at an airport, my question is why? The drone community can help each other and find this person a safer place to fly.

Now if the hobbyist is engaging in non hobbyist flying (not 336), then yes, they could fall under Part 107 and be held to those regulations or in violation.