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Drone Operations Restricted Over Security-Sensitive Facilities

Drone Operations Restricted Over Security-Sensitive Facilities

At the request of its Federal security partners, the FAA is using its authority under Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations Special Security Instructions to address concerns about drone operations over national security-sensitive facilities by establishing temporary flight restrictions specific to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).  In cooperation with Department of Defense (DOD), the FAA is establishing additional restrictions on drone flights up to 400 feet within the lateral boundaries of the following Federal facilities:

  • National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) West near St. Louis, MO
  • NGA Next West near St. Louis, MO
  • NGA Arnold near St. Louis, MO

These changes will become effective August 30, 2018.  There are only a few exceptions that permit drone flights within these restrictions, and they must be coordinated with the individual facility and/or the FAA.  Operators who violate the flight restrictions may be subject to enforcement action, including potential civil penalties and criminal charges.

Information on the FAA Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) can be found on the FAA website. To ensure the public is aware of these restricted locations, the FAA website also provides an interactive map, downloadable geospatial data, and other important details. These restrictions also are depicted in the FAA’s B4UFLY mobile app.  Additional, broader information regarding flying drones in the National Airspace System, including frequently asked questions, is available on the FAA’s UAS website.

The FAA continues to consider additional requests by eligible Federal security agencies for UAS-specific flight restrictions using the Agency’s § 99.7 authority as they are received. Additional changes to these restrictions will be announced by the FAA as appropriate.

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