October 1st, 2014
I ran across Brendan Schulman’s tweet this morning while drinking my morning coffee. Brendan is the NYC attorney that is representing Raphael Pirker as well as many other legal cases involving small UAVs. Brendan’s tweet says it all.
Even though, Brendan is a very reliable source, I spent a fair amount time today trying to research and understand this new NC law. I talked to one very prominent professional videographer in NC and he is shutting down his drone photography operation as of today. Here’s what has happened as I understand it (I’m no attorney so this isn’t legal advice). If you have more info or understanding please chime in:
- Here is the bill (House bill 1099) that was passed last week.
- It goes into effect today October, 1 2014.
- It says that to operate UAVs in NC for commercial purposes you need a license from the NC state Department of Transportation.
- But you can’t get a license right now because the Department of Transportation doesn’t have a licensing system yet, but will develop a licensing system to comply with the FAA guidelines as soon as FAA guidelines become available.
So what the State of NC has done is front ended the FAA guidelines (that isn’t law) with an NC state law that is enforceable. They’ve eliminated confusion for the citizens of North Carolina in this confusing area of commercial UAV operation.
I just talked with a Realtor in NC that flies his own drone for real estate video. He was surprised and outraged at by this development so there may be others in NC that haven’t heard about this new drone law yet.