Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

Is it ILLEGAL to fly within 15 miles of White House?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mduehmig, Aug 25, 2015.

Tags:
  1. mduehmig

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Annapolis, MD
    I am sure this question was answered in a discussion earlier, but I searched and can't find it. So I apologize in advance for posting it again.

    For the first time, I might want/need to fly within the 15 mile envelope around the White House. AND I've never updated the firmware on my PV2+. So my question is, is it really illegal to fly within 15 miles or is that just a self imposed DJI restriction?

    I'd like to do a very low level flight about 13 miles away and don't want to do anything illegal.

    Thanks in advance!
    Mark
     
  2. msinger

    Approved Vendor

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    Messages:
    18,990
    Likes Received:
    5,590
    Location:
    US
  3. mduehmig

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Annapolis, MD
    msinger, thanks for that link. That is a great resource. But it shows a MUCH larger restricted area than even the DJI airspace restriction. It seems really murky where it is truly LEGAL to fly vs illegal.
     
  4. msinger

    Approved Vendor

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    Messages:
    18,990
    Likes Received:
    5,590
    Location:
    US
  5. mduehmig

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Annapolis, MD
    More clear. Thank you.
     
  6. SteveMann

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2014
    Messages:
    1,977
    Likes Received:
    653
    Location:
    Westford, MA
    BigAl07 likes this.
  7. JKDSensei

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2015
    Messages:
    1,511
    Likes Received:
    658
    Location:
    USA
    Yes, illegal but.......

    I can almost guarantee you that a LOT of things are flying in that area without permission.
    Either because people are unaware or don't care. Phantom 1's don't have any flight restrictions.
    Many others UAV's don't as well. I would take a WAG that several hundred drones are flown within 30 miles of DC daily. There are a LOT of people and a lot of area in that 30 miles.

    When they start enforcing and prosecuting it will drop off. But not until then.

     
  8. __astronaut

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2015
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    11
    It's interesting that the DJI No Fly Zone map does not show NOTAM 0/8326. It only shows the 15 mile radius from the White House. Does this mean 0/8326 is not yet in DJ's NFZ database, which means DJI crafts can still take off outside of the 15 mile zone?
     
  9. LUISMARTINEZ

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2015
    Messages:
    759
    Likes Received:
    272
    Calling the FAA FSDO will get you an official reply rather than a guess from a forum.
    Baltimore FSDO:

    890 Airport Park Road
    Suite 101
    Glen Burnie, Maryland 21061-2559
    Manager: Elbert Bush
    Phone: (410) 787-0040
    Fax: (410) 787-8708
     
  10. LUISMARTINEZ

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2015
    Messages:
    759
    Likes Received:
    272
    When they start enforcing and prosecuting it will drop off. You really trying to be the first??
     
  11. JKDSensei

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2015
    Messages:
    1,511
    Likes Received:
    658
    Location:
    USA
    You missed the point. I was pointing out that there are many people who do not follow the rules. I am not one of those. It will probably take prosecutions and enforcement to stop those people was my point. They will not follow common sense rules until forced to do so.
     
  12. LUISMARTINEZ

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2015
    Messages:
    759
    Likes Received:
    272
    " I was pointing out that there are many people who do not follow the rules. I am not one of those."
    Good for you.
     
  13. JKDSensei

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2015
    Messages:
    1,511
    Likes Received:
    658
    Location:
    USA
    Thank you. Glad you finally got it ;)
     
  14. Joe Video

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2015
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Belmont, MA
  15. Formstone

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    40
    So do I have this right;

    DJI restricts your Phantom 2/3 to no motor start within 15.5 miles from the center of the backfilled swamp but the FAA says no drones within 30NM of the center of the backfilled swamp?

    There are drones all over the place and I saw several fly at the US sailboat show in Annapolis.

    Currently that means I need to drive about 3 miles from my house to fly if the 30NM is true.
     
  16. tcope

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    3,530
    Likes Received:
    1,389
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Even the FAA info is confusing. Their site lists 15 and 30 miles around Reagan Washington Airport.
     
  17. Formstone

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    40
    I called the tower at BWI some time ago and asked, they said not within 2.5 miles of the tower, I live 2.64 miles. That's 27.2 NM from Reagan

    If the 30NM is true, it is ridiculous and a nuisance, it means I can fly my drone over the slums of Baltimore but not over the western shore of the Chesapeake.

    I have the latest firmware and can start the motors but ai do get the restricted warning for ground station.
     
  18. ianwood

    ianwood Taco Wrangler
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2014
    Messages:
    4,922
    Likes Received:
    1,797
    Location:
    Lost Angeles
    Please don't call the FSDO unless you truly can't figure it out by other means. They're already inundated with drone related queries and requests.

    Hopefully the FAA will release the B4UFly app soon. It's been months. In the meantime, look at skyvector.com for TFRs and always know your distance to nearby airports.
     
  19. Mark The Droner

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2015
    Messages:
    3,998
    Likes Received:
    1,168
    Location:
    Brookeville, MD, USA
    I live 19 miles north of the White House. I would call my area semi-rural. There are cornfields and cows very near here, but there is also a suburban neighborhood very near here.

    I think part of the confusion is that the FAA released the below linked document eight days after this thread was started.

    The FAA has outlined two zones in and around Washington, D.C. Let's define the two zones in FAA terms.

    The "no-fly zone" which we know is within 15 miles from the White House is called an FRZ by the FAA. It's been in place for many years. In addition, the donut shaped area which is very close to a 15-30 mile diameter ring from the White House has also existed for many years and is called an SFRA. These are both flight restricted areas. The question I think is, does it apply to drones? That has been where most of the confusion has stemmed from. But there is no longer any confusion. The answer, as of September 2nd, is an unequivocal "yes."

    http://www.phantompilots.com/attachments/ac_91-57a-pdf.34754/

    If you study the language of the document, it seems drones are not "banned" from the FRZ (i.e. no fly zone) or the SFRA - it's just that the owners must acquire "specific authorization." Otherwise, they expose themselves to the risk of possible "enforcement action" - whether their craft causes a problem or not - but that apparently depends on if it can be determined by "the Administrator" that the pilot has endangered the "National Airspace System."

    On the other hand, if a drone operator can get permission, he's fine.

    That's the way I read it.

    So, ironically, it seems it is technically possible a Phantom owner can get specific authorization to fly in the SFRA or the FRZ, but regarding the FRZ it doesn't matter because DJI's software won't let it. On the other hand, DJI's software restriction was placed before Sept 2nd.

    Meanwhile, I have written a letter to the FAA requesting "specific authorization" for general use of my PV over a nearby cornfield. It's been two weeks and I haven't heard a word.
     
    #19 Mark The Droner, Nov 16, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2015
  20. Formstone

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    40
    If this is the case, there are a good dozen or more local AMA clubs that can no longer fly. Not just us Phantom owners.

    The closest airpark to me is in Lansdowne MD and they should no longer be allowed to fly.

    guess it is time to call some local politicians and get the heat on. Those of us that live near the backfilled swamp should not have to be so limited.
    FWIW - I'd be ok with the inside the capital beltway being kept an NFZ, nothing there worth shooting anyway.