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As seen in the June 2017 issue of
Model Aviation.


The FAA and Department of Defense (DoD) recently announced airspace restrictions above 133 military facilities to address national security concerns. These new restrictions, outlined in NOTAM FDC 7/7282, apply to all model aircraft, sometimes referred to as drones or Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS).

The restrictions will remain in effect 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The flight restrictions apply to specific locations on military property for all model aircraft operations up to 400 feet. Operators who violate these restrictions are subject to enforcement action, including potential civil penalties and criminal charges.

For more than 80 years, AMA members have safely operated model aircraft in the National Airspace System by following strict community-based guidelines. Our history includes a great relationship with the military through our large military membership base, military partnerships, and collaborative efforts. AMA flying sites and events—including many National Aeromodeling Championships dating back to the 1940s—have been safely and responsibly conducted on military property.

To preserve our safety record and commitment to national security and the military, it is important that we all comply with the new restrictions. Following are a few answers to commonly asked questions related to these UAS flight restrictions.

Q: I fly near, but not on, military property. Am I affected by this announcement?

A: No. The restrictions affect select military sites only and do not apply beyond military property lines.

Q: My club flying site or event is located on military property. Is my site affected?

A: It is most likely not affected. The new military restrictions are not blanket no-fly zones encompassing all military property. Most restrictions only apply to specific, sensitive areas or critical infrastructure within military property. Your flying site is probably outside of these high-security areas, but we recommend you confirm if your site is affected by visiting the FAA interactive map. You might notice that your flying site location has a red/pink striped overlay. This indicates that you are operating on military property and not necessarily within the new UAS flight-restricted area. The newly announced UAS restrictions are marked with a completely filled reddish-pink overlay.

Q: Does this flight restriction only apply to drones, multirotors, or models with cameras?

A: The restrictions apply to all civilian model aircraft or UAS, not just drones, multirotors, or models with cameras. Any model aircraft operator who violates these restrictions is subject to enforcement action.

Q: Are there any exceptions to the new military restrictions?

A: The specific military sites were carved out by the DoD and the FAA to protect national security. If you have a preexisting flying site or need permission to fly model aircraft within a restricted area, please contact the AMA Government Relations team at (765) 287-1256, extension 227.






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