US Drone Law
Cutting Edge Legal Analysis for
Cutting Edge Drone Technology
US Drone Law is not a law firm. The contents of this site do not represent legal advice and are for informational purposes only.
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Frequently Asked Questions
It depends. Federal law prohibits drones from flying where there are temporary flight restrictions. The FAA will often issue Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) to announce temporary flight restrictions. In the case of stadiums, the FAA has issued a NOTAM that prohibits drone pilots from flying a drone at or below 3,000 above ground level (AGL) within a 3 nautical mile radius of any stadium with a seating capacity of 30,000 or more people during a Major League Baseball (MLB), regular or post-season National Football League (NFL), or NCAA Division I football game, or major motor speedway event. This temporary flight restriction applies to the entire U.S. domestic national airspace system and takes effect starting one hour before the scheduled event time until one hour after the event concludes. You can read the full NOTAM on the FAA website.
If you are flying your drone for purely recreational purposes then you are technically allowed to fly over small stadiums and sporting events that fall outside those described above. However, flying your drone over a crowd of unprotected people might be viewed by some as operating your drone outside the “community based set of safety guidelines” for recreational drones. There is currently not definitive answer to this question.
Anyone operating a drone under a Section 333 exemption or a public COA should comply with the specific requirements of the exemption or COA.