Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

Government Restrictions

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Michael A, Jan 1, 2016.

  1. Michael A

    Jan 1, 2016
    Likes Received:
    I'm on the FAA site and am reviewing the FAQ: Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Frequently Asked Questions

    Look at the Q&A below

    Do I need approval from the FAA to fly a model aircraft for recreation or hobby?
    No, but your aircraft must be registered if it weighs more than 0.55 lbs. FAA guidance also says that model aircraft should be flown a sufficient distance from populated areas and full scale aircraft, should be kept within visual line of sight of the operator, should weigh under 55 lbs. unless certified by an aeromodeling community-based organization, and cannot be used for business purposes.1, 2

    I note that in the one paragraph, they use the modifiers must, cannot, and should. I would think, then, that the only reasonable interpretation would be the plain meaning of these words, that is

    Must - you have to do that, and if you don't you could suffer penalties
    Cannot - you are not allowed to do that, and if you do you could suffer penalties
    Should - it is recommended that you do that, but if you don't there are no penalties.

    Why else would they use this language? Why don't they say that you must fly within visual line of site, etc.? I can only conclude that you don't have to, it's not against the law, but it is a good idea and is recommended.

    Can anyone confirm this? I know I and many others enjoy piloting their drones beyond visual line of site.

  2. barefootbeachcombing

    Nov 2, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Yes, in legal terms, "should' is a suggestion while "shall" is a requirement.

    And "guidance" is exactly that. Guidance. Not law.

    However, if a problem occurs in your flight and you, for example, crash into someone else's property or person and create damage, not following the items that are suggested and the guidance will surely be used against you.

    So caveat emptor.