Where Can I Fly My Drone?
You are likely wondering where can I fly my drone? There are a lot of rules you must be made aware of. Flying a drone can be a lot of fun and liberating, however, you need to be aware of the areas where you cannot fly so you do not get yourself into trouble. Here are some of the places you can and can't fly your drone.
Apps That Tell You Where to Fly Your Drone
Because there are so many drone laws and restrictions that change from town to town, it can be difficult to keep up with where you can go and fly your quadcopter. These drone safety apps are important as they can keep you up to date on the current restrictions and let you safely and legally fly your drone without having to travel too far or worry about whether you are breaking the law.
The first app is UAV Forecast. This app is great for pilots, whether you are doing this for fun or professionally, this is a really good app to add to your phone. The coverage is unmatched on this app as it allows you to figure out where I can fly my drone. You will be given up to date forecasts when it comes to the weather an wind speed with this app. You will also be given real time flight restrictions as well as clearly identifiable no fly zones in your given area.
The next drone air safety app is Hover. This is one of the top apps when it comes to apps for flying unmanned aircraft. This app is incredibly easy to use and very informative. This app provides you with international no fly zone maps as well as an interface that is incredibly intuitive that will help you safely navigate the skies. You will also be given flight logs, so you as an individual, or a team that you are on are able to log, track and maintain the drone fleet. You can manage personnel, drones, and equipment.
With Hover you are also given the current weather conditions as well as a detailed forecast and a breakdown of both the direction of the wind as well as the wind speed. There is also a news feed that will provide coverage from dronelife.com which will help pilots like yourself stay up to date with everything that is going on in the drone industry. Lastly, you are given a flight readiness indicator. This aspect is very easy to understand, it simply gives you a flight status so that you can know if it is safe to fly your UAV. This will depend on the location you are in as well as the conditions you are dealing with.
This next app is for the United States only, it is called FAAS B4UFLY. It is owned by the FAA or federal aviation administration and it is designed to help keep pilots as well as their drones legal. This app is all about legislation and keeping you up to date with it. It will let you know if there are any restrictions or requirements when it comes to the location in which you want to fly in.
This B4UFLLY app includes a status indicator that will inform you right away about the rules in the current location you are in or the location you plan to go to. You are also given information when it comes to the parameters that drive your status indicator. There is a planner mode for when you plan to take future flights to different spots. There are even links to resources from the FAA UAS as well as regulatory information.
This next app is called AirMap, s another great app that is a provider of airspace maps to the Know Before You Fly FAA campaign. This app was made to help make drone operations much safer by connecting the airport operators, UAV pilots and air traffic controllers together. As of 2016, AirMap had 75 airports that were onboard with the application itself. This helps to provide the airport managers with a dashboard where they will be able to give permission for drone flights as well as set specific automated policies when it comes to certain areas that are close to or near airports.
AirMap is more known for commercial use rather than recreational use. This app will give pilots a nice clear view of any close by aerospace information. This will, in turn allow them to report when and where they are planning on flying. This particular information is then given to airport control towers so that accidents can then be best avoided.
Some of the features that AirMap provides includes airspace data information, the ability to toggle advisory maps overlays along with airspace information. You will also be given access to really fast vector maps along with a pilot profile view. You are able to manage the UAV aircraft and not only create but also manage flights as well as plan out future flights. This app allows for you to file digital flight notifications and view public flights. There are real time alerts and you can toggle between four different types of map styles and search the map by location or place.
This next app is available only through the UK and is called Drone Assist. The UK's Civil Authority teamed up with the National Air Traffic Control Services and created this particular app. Up to thousands of UK drone pilots have downloaded this app by the thousands.
This app provides users with access to an interactive map of the UK airspace. This airspace is also updated and used by commercial air traffic as well. This will help to give pilots plenty of warning on the areas they should be avoiding or at least use extreme caution when using. There are also ground hazards that are provided that will let pilots know when there is a risk that could affect their security, safety, or even privacy when they are out flying their drone.
When you are out flying your drone, you will likely want to get in touch with other pilots so that you can all get together and share your locations and flight patterns. There is a fly now feature that will allow you to do just that. You can share your flight location along with other users of the app and the drone community. This can be helpful in preventing any drone related accidents in the UK airspace.
Safe Places to Fly Your Drone by App Movement
App movement is a resource for pilots that allows them to come together and find the best legal areas they can fly their drones in. You can find the most beautiful scenery along with unobstructed open areas, accessible public right of ways in order to take off from and many other types of areas that are legal and accessible to use for anyone who has a drone.
This app allows you to share your location from all over the world. Through this app you can better understand airspace restrictions and sensitive areas as well as any types of prohibitions or local laws that you will need to be made aware of before taking off. This app is still being built, but will eventually, the final form will allow it to be collaboratively designed by all subscribers and viewers from the Youtube channel "On the Kitchen Table" as well as anybody else who feels they want to join in and contribute to this really fun hobby.
Granted, this app mostly exists so that it can sell you things, but it also has a very interesting feature that can give you a good idea of where the best spots to fly are. This app provides a map of all of the nearby flying hotspots. This not only shows you where everyone nearby is flying, but it also will give you a good heads up on where the safest places to fly are. You can see the profiles of the people who are flying in certain locations so you can better learn who you can trust and who you can't when it comes to flying in their hotspots. You can create your own profile and share any of your own favorite pictures or popular spots with other pilots.
It is important that you understand the best places to fly whenever you own a drone. You want to ensure that you are staying within the law and that you are being smart and safe while you fly. The only way to do this is to make yourself aware of the nearby laws and learn about the best places to fly in your area. Because each city and location is different in what is and isn't allowed in drone piloting, it is important that you find yourself some trustworthy apps that will let you better find the hot spots when it comes to safely and legally flying your drone around town.
Where You Can Fly Your Drone
If you are ever in doubt of where you can fly your recreational drone, it is always a good idea to call if possible. For instance, it is obvious that you cannot fly within 5 miles of an airport, however, if you call and request something reasonable in flying in their no fly zone and they will typically allow you. Remember, it never hurts to ask, and it could end up saving you tens of thousands of dollars in the long run as drone safety laws are serious and expensive if broken.
Always remember that you have to fly under 400 feet when you are manning your drone. However, what constitutes as the ground varies. For instance, you can fly your UAV from off of a building or structure. The most important part of this rule is just to always be sure you can see your drone at all times.
You can apply for a waiver should you want to fly your drone higher. Just be prepared to wait, it can take up to 90 days for your waiver to be approved. The processing time will vary based on the complexity of the request you have made. You will simply have to demonstrate that you can safely fly without endangering others or property both on the ground and in the air.
You will always have to operate during the day whenever you are flying your drone. As long as it is daylight outside, then you are permitted to fly your unmanned aircraft. You are also permitted to fly during twilight. Twilight is defined as 30 minutes after the official sunset and 30 minutes before the official sunrise. However, your drone has to have appropriate anti-collision lighting that is visible from up to three miles away
Underpopulated areas are the best place to put your bird in the air. You do not want to go to a crowded area and fly over people as this is against the law. Any person that is not part of the associated flight crew is not to be flown over under no exceptions. This means fields, valleys, or even your yard, as long as there are not people around and you are not trespassing, then you will be able to fly your quad as you please.
Some people have a lot of land that is empty and free of people. If you want to fly on private property it is allowed as long as you get permission from the owner. Many owners will not mind as long as you are not close to their house or any cattle, horses, or any other animals. You do not want to fly near animals as you can easily spook them with the noise and the movement. For some great drone flying tips check out this post which help you fly safely no matter where you fly.
Places You Can't Fly Your Drone
As previously mentioned, you are not allowed to fly within 5 miles of an airport without the airport's permission. And remember, just because you ask does not necessarily mean you will get permission. However, most of the time they will allow it if the request is reasonable and smart.
You are not allowed to fly your aircraft in crowded locations. This is especially true at beaches, parks, and sporting events. It's not legal to fly over any national parks. You basically have to consider the amount of people that will be in a location. If any person not involved in the flying of your drone is flown over, then you are breaking the law. Be sure to always be mindful of others and never fly in an area where there will be people.
It is not legal to fly around any military installations as this could be very hazardous. You will have to get permission from the controlling agency, which is air traffic control. However, it is common for the request to be denied as these areas are often unavailable.
No matter where you are flying your drone, you cannot fly it more than 400 feet off the ground in America. However, each country has different guidelines on how high you can fly drones. For instance, Canada allows for 90 meters, which is right under 300 feet
You must at all times have your drone within your sight. If at any point you are unable to see your drone, then you are breaking the law. Keep your drone close and safe. Be sure that you use common sense in this and do not go too crazy in how and where you fly your drone. For instance, when flying in heavily wooded areas, it is important to use caution as you can easily wreck your drone if you are not keeping it within your sight. You will want to also practice extreme caution so as not to hit any wildlife while you are out in more wide open areas where there may be more wildlife out and about.
If you live in the Washington D.C. area, then you will have to follow some strict rules in order to safely and legally fly your drone. Because of the 9/11 attacks there are a lot of rules that go along with flying your drone in this district. There are a lot of places in Washington D.C. where you are not allowed to fly your drone. Be aware of these laws.
Some of these areas in which specific activities have to be confined include restricted areas, prohibitied areas, warning areas, alert areas, controlled firing areas, or CFAs, as well as military operation areas, or MOAs. Limitations are often imposed on aircraft operations in these areas as they can be dangerous for drones to fly in and around these areas.
There are Temporary Flight Restrictions, or TFRs which define certain areas of airspace where the air travel is temporary illegal due to hazardous conditions that will eventually pass. This includes wildfires, chemical spills, or any type of security related event like the United Nations General Assembly. These TFRs are important to be aware of as they can get you into trouble and also cause damage to your drone should you fly too close to a hazardous condition.
You are not allowed to fly your drone within a 3 miles radius of a stadium or venue within one hour of either side of the event. These no fly zones include National Football League, Major League Baseball, NASCAR Sprint Cup, NCAA Division One Football, Champ Series Races, and Indy Car.
You cannot fly your drone at night. However, if your drone has anti collision lighting, then you are allowed to fly 30 minutes before sunrise and 30 minutes after sunset. But any time after or before these times is not allowed, regardless of whether or not you have any lights on your drone. You must only fly during the day.
Each city has its own guidelines and local regulations when it comes to flying a drone. It is always important to check with your local authority in order to abide by the rules your town has put into place. The same goes for any neighboring towns, remember, just because your town allows one thing does not mean that the next town over will. You will always need to check with the town authority in order to fly safely and legally in your town.
It is difficult to tell you where you can and cannot fly as each location is different and you can sometimes get around restricted areas with a simple request. There are a lot of ways that you can tell where you can and cannot fly, it simply comes down to knowing where to look, who to ask, and lastly, where to go. Luckily, there are a plethora of apps that you can choose from which will help you to better understand the places you can go in your area as well as the places that you need to stay away from.
It is important that you not only steer clear of people, but of moving vehicles as well. You also need to keep an eye on the weather and not fly your drone if it is especially windy or raining outside. Also, stay away from the fog as it can prevent you from being able to see your drone as you fly it.
Never operate your drone if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. You must remain clear headed and competent whenever you are flying your drone. Treat it as if you were driving your car, it is important that you are careful and able to fully concentrate on flying your drone as you do it.
Do not fly over any infrastructure or property that is sensitive. This includes water treatment facilities, power stations, correctional facilities, government facilities and highways. Not only highways, but any roadway that is heavily traveled.
No matter whether you are flying for fun or flying a commercial drone always be safe and responsible. Unmanned aircraft systems of all types should keep away from nofly zones and follow all rules and regulations for that matter. Practicing aircraft safety will keep the drone industry as well as hobbyist in the air for the long run.