Warning from the LAPD--do not use UAVs commercially!

Please see this warning from the Los Angeles Police Department, sent to the California Association of Realtors. Discussion on helifreak here.  More background and discussion here. I'll be talking to the NYT about this tomorrow. 

Short form: Amateur UAV use within the usual FAA guidelines (under 400ft, within visual line-of-sight, away from built-up-areas) is allowed, as always. But commercial use requires a COA, which you're not going to get. So there's nothing new here, but it's a reminder that the guidelines will be enforced.

LAPD Warning Against Hiring Unmanned Aircraft Operators for Aerial Photos

Los Angeles authorities have asked C.A.R. to communicate this warning to REALTORS® who hire unmanned aircraft operators to take aerial photographs for marketing high-end properties.  Using these devices (also known as drones) for flight in the air with no onboard pilot may violate, among other things, the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) policy on unmanned aircrafts, and Los Angeles's local ordinance requiring permits for filming commercial motion pictures and still photographs.

The Los Angeles Police Department's (LAPD) investigation has apparently revealed that aerial photos where unmanned aircraft were observed have appeared on certain real estate sales websites.  According to FilmL.A., the LAPD Air Division has issued this warning as it intends to prosecute violators in the near future.  FilmL.A. is a public benefit company created by the City and County of Los Angeles to manage film permit activity and related issues.

Under the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)'s current policy, no one can operate an unmanned aircraft in the National Airspace System without specific authority.  Operators who wish to fly an unmanned aircraft for civil use must obtain an FAA experimental airworthiness certificate, which will not be issued to an unmanned aircraft used for compensation or hire. Although the FAA allows hobbyists to fly model airplanes for recreational purposes under specific guidelines, that authority does not extend to operators flying unmanned aircraft for business purposes. More information is available from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Notice on Unmanned Aircraft Operations and the FAA's policy. 

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Comment by BRAD BARNSON on January 31, 2012 at 9:03am

One thing at almost 50 yrs old now, I have found out about my self is.... I am very very good at circumventing the intent of the law and very very very good at filling out forms / filling out paperwork....

Comment by Jay on January 31, 2012 at 11:25am

What has happened to our country? I'm moving to Canada this is ridiculous...

Comment by Lebdog on January 31, 2012 at 1:41pm

People in LA are all talk.  If you invent or develop something cool in LA, you better guard your invention, because the buzzard begin to circle and covet (yes, that it no understatement, covet what you have).  They believe they WILL get it by some means, and they truly do not have a limit.  This is one means by which they take what you have...  If you can't read between the lines, I am not gonna spell it out, but LA is all about coveting others property, lifestyle, wives, etc...  Sick and sad...

Comment by Brad Smith on January 31, 2012 at 2:59pm

I,ll go with Brads answer and add i can play real dumb real well !

Comment by M.A.N. on January 31, 2012 at 3:09pm

So if Mr. FAA was to see these kind of comments (and they do) he would see the kind of mentality they have to deal with.

Comment by Lebdog on January 31, 2012 at 3:30pm

Well, they would see they the people of America have not fought for their civil rights for decades.  They have allowed politicians and corporations to take over and exclusively serve greedy corporations.  With the economy of the US in the toilet, maybe the FAA clown could look at the opportunity to license multi-copter pilots for FPV and other activities, rather than blanket restrict them..  
When those sleeping, who have slept through the complete molestation of the US constitution talk about mentality, well, bummer for those willing to stand up for their rights..  Jay is right, this country is sailing way off course, all outside nations are mocking us for the fools we are..
I am leaving the US for Mexico within the next 30 days because I walk the walk..  
Too bad for the rest of the US, most people just talk! 

Comment by M.A.N. on January 31, 2012 at 3:35pm

OK take care

Comment by John Johnson on January 31, 2012 at 5:18pm

Jay, Lebdog, have a safe trip.

Comment by Longshot7601 on January 31, 2012 at 10:28pm

How can this kind of flying while filming motorcycles on Mulholland...


be less dangerous to life and property than a 4 pound quad rotor?

BTW. The heli in the YouTube video (N4177R) is owned by a company called Air & Land Ventures.  Here is a link to an incident involving another Air & Land Ventures R44...


All of this protection is killing this country.

Comment by BRAD BARNSON on February 1, 2012 at 2:04am

Ok Im not sure just how to support UAV rights both private and commercial. Anyone know who is doing what?

Who is representing UAV interests?


Season Two of the Trust Time Trial (T3) Contest 
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