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Pictures for a school? Legal or Not?
613 6 2018-4-14
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CjMiller7
lvl.3
Flight distance : 35413 ft
United States
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My whole family thinks my recently acquired drone is really cool!...which it is! We got to talking about what I could and could not do with the drone and where I could and could not take the drone. One of my family members is a teacher at a local school and was wondering if I was allowed to fly over/for schools. For instance, if they wanted something such as an aerial picture of their band in formation, etc. This isint something that is realisticly in the picture, but was rather a hypothetical question. I had read up on all the rules to previously owning the drone, and this was one of the things I hadnt seen any rules on. Technically this would be flying over a group of people, but it would obviously be with school permission as they would be the ones hypothetically "asking" me. Now I do not have a commercial liecense so I obviously would do this completely free, just for the experience and to help a local school. No monetized profit for me, just the profit of experience.
Long story short, is it legal/illegal to fly for a school with permission? It gets hazy for me whether a school could for lack of a better term, could be the exception to a federal rule (not flying over a group of people).
2018-4-14
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Gunship9
Captain
United States
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I would think that you having the approval/permission of school officials would make it okay.  They control the property and therefore can let you fly over it for school reasons.  Plus, the FAA is all kinds of into people teaching safe aviation and drone practices.  The only issue would be a straight down shot of the group since that would be over people.  Flying over people is frowned upon since drones can fail and fall down.  There are tons of great shots you could get without being right over people.  Plus, the Spark is tiny and light enough that it is almost below the minimum weight for the FAA to regulate its use.  Almost, too light to regulate due to its low damage potential (50grams too heavy to be classed as a toy).

You need the license only if you are making money on the drone flight.  The FAA knows how chasing dollars can get people flying drones recklessly (think news reporters at accident scenes).  No problem since no money is involved.
2018-4-14
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pale738821
lvl.2

India
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2018-6-5
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Jackpeters
lvl.1

United Kingdom
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2018-8-31
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Jackpeters
lvl.1

United Kingdom
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Great! Very good!
2018-8-31
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Sidd Finch
First Officer
Flight distance : 256 ft
United States
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If you are in the US I would suggest that you go directly to the source which is the FAA. Then you can at least read what they have said and determine if you are "good to go". Also of interest is that some schools provide waivers to their students to be excluded from having pictures or video taken of them. You just want to double check with the school that none of the kids you plan to photograph have a waiver on file with the school. Below is the FAA info and website.

According to the FAA: https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/model_aircraft/


To fly under the Special Rule for Model Aircraft you must:

Fly for hobby or recreation ONLY
Register your model aircraft
Fly within visual line-of-sight
Follow community-based safety guidelines and fly within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization
Fly a drone under 55 lbs. unless certified by a community-based organization
Never fly near other aircraft
Notify the airport and air traffic control tower prior to flying within 5 miles of an airport*
Never fly near emergency response efforts

Also You want to check out section 336 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 and the FAA’s enforcement authority over model aircraft as affirmed by the statute.

You can then check out the AMA which  is considered a community-based organization, Academy of Model Aeronautics. You could print out the guidelines and follow them

Sidd
2018-8-31
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Rustic17
Captain
Flight distance : 2227887 ft
United States
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Sidd Finch Posted at 2018-8-31 08:39
If you are in the US I would suggest that you go directly to the source which is the FAA. Then you can at least read what they have said and determine if you are "good to go". Also of interest is that some schools provide waivers to their students to be excluded from having pictures or video taken of them. You just want to double check with the school that none of the kids you plan to photograph have a waiver on file with the school. Below is the FAA info and website.

According to the FAA: https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/model_aircraft/


Excellent information here Sidd...thanks so much for your input.  What I see now that needs to be completed ASAP (to insure our hobby/recreational status) is to form a "nationwide community-based organization" with "a comprehensive set of safety guidelines."  This could be as easy as forming a group called "United States DJI Spark Forum Members" and coming up with a set of safety guidelines.  Remember, the operative word is "guidelines", not regulations.  Once the group and guidelines are established, forum members could "join" the group by adding their name in reply to a forum posting.  The guidelines could have a version number, be modified or added to in the future, etc etc.

I highly recommend all read:  For more information about what you can do with a model aircraft, please read FAA Advisory Circular 91-57A (PDF) or read the Interpretation of the Special Rule for Model Aircraft (PDF).  These are found in the link Sidd provided.
2018-8-31
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