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Thu, Aug 22, 2019

Another City Passes Drone Restrictions

Legislation Targeted At Recreational Flyers

The city of Prairie Village in eastern Kansas has given initial approval to an ordinance prohibiting the use of drones over private property without the property owner's consent and imposing other restrictions.

The Kansas City Star reports that the Mayor Eric Mikkelson cast the tie-breaking vote moving the legislation forward. It will be up for a second vote in September.

Concerns were first raised in the city about drones when someone flew a quadcopter over the annual Jazz Festival in Harmon Park in 2017. And while Police Chief Tim Schwartzkopf said there have not been many complaints since then, it sparked a debate about privacy and "window-peeping" using drones.

The restrictions imposed by the Prairie Village ordinance include no flights:

  • Near people without their consent, or in a way that could hurt someone.
  • Over an event with more than 100 people, without the consent of the venue owner or event organizer.
  • Over property that the operator does not own or have consent to occupy.
  • To conduct surveillance.
  • While under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • When the drone is equipped with a weapon.
  • In a reckless or careless manner.

Local news organizations said they worried that the law would affect their ability to gather news using drones, but the ordinance would apply only to recreational flyers, not commercial users licensed by the FAA.

Violations of the ordinance would be a Class C Misdemeanor, punishable with a $500 fine or a month in jail.

(Image from file)

FMI: Source report

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