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It should be legal to fly here, but should I avoid it?

vindibona1

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There is a beautiful lakefront not far from where I live, in Evanston Illinois. In 2013 the City of Evanston passed a "no drone moritorum" until the State passed a drone law. Well, in 2018 Illinois did plass such a law...

SB 3291 // 2018
"The State of Illinois has the sole authority to pass drone laws. Cities, towns, and other municipalities may not enact regulations or restrictions on the usage of drones. A special exemption is granted for municipalities with over 1,000,000 residents.

But you know how some small towns/cities can be, and the police within them. What I don't want to run into is a policeman who may be aware of the city ordinance, but be unaware that the state nullifed it. The only other nearby issue might be Northwestern University that has a drone ban. I understand that they are quasi private property (with their own cadre of campus police that operate like city police). In that instance, I would have to assume that the same rules might apply as with public lands where I have come to believe that you cannot launch from the property is not a violation if your drone flys over- as long as you don't violate the FAA and UAV rules of flying over people, etc.

It's a beautiful area, truly.... The campus looks right across the water at the city. How would you approach the situation... or just stay away?
 
Even though they can't legally pass drone laws it doesn't mean they won't do it and try to intimidate with them. Are you willing to pay to be the one to take it to court?

Also that has no effect on Land Use restrictions... they could say you can't fly FROM their property and it would be legal to restrict you then.
 
Even though they can't legally pass drone laws it doesn't mean they won't do it and try to intimidate with them. Are you willing to pay to be the one to take it to court?

Also that has no effect on Land Use restrictions... they could say you can't fly FROM their property and it would be legal to restrict you then.
The one thing I will say is that simply being in accordance with the law doesn't protect you from arrest... or conviction these days. I'm not sure if I want to test the system... but I might call the PD ahead of flying and let them know that I might be flying in the area and go on record to let them know that I know the law... just in case.
 
The one thing I will say is that simply being in accordance with the law doesn't protect you from arrest... or conviction these days.

“You *might* beat the rap, but you won’t beat the ride.”
 
Exactly iaincaradoc
See the case going on in Louisiana courts: Important case for UAV future flying - please help.

I guess one option would be to literal go to the authorities armed with your information and tell them you would like to fly your drone non-intrusively and where would they allow to fly it? You might be surprised at the result or you might come out with them denying the over ruling law, but at least you will know their position.
 
Frankly, I thinking asking permission will provoke a normal official to follow the "CYA" law. E.g.: Cove Your A.... (behind). That's always the default response.
 
I would print out a copy of the Illinois law and carry it with me. If accosted by unsympathetic police, stop flying and go see the precinct commander.
At the university, maybe try asking permission to fly from their property. Your only risk is that they'll say no. In that case, explore their understanding of the FAA's control over airspace. If you're lucky they'll understand that they can't control an overflight if you don't trespass on their property. Or they may be total jerks, in which case you'll have to decide whether it's worth it.
 
There is a beautiful lakefront not far from where I live, in Evanston Illinois. In 2013 the City of Evanston passed a "no drone moritorum" until the State passed a drone law. Well, in 2018 Illinois did plass such a law...

SB 3291 // 2018
"The State of Illinois has the sole authority to pass drone laws. Cities, towns, and other municipalities may not enact regulations or restrictions on the usage of drones. A special exemption is granted for municipalities with over 1,000,000 residents.

But you know how some small towns/cities can be, and the police within them. What I don't want to run into is a policeman who may be aware of the city ordinance, but be unaware that the state nullifed it. The only other nearby issue might be Northwestern University that has a drone ban. I understand that they are quasi private property (with their own cadre of campus police that operate like city police). In that instance, I would have to assume that the same rules might apply as with public lands where I have come to believe that you cannot launch from the property is not a violation if your drone flys over- as long as you don't violate the FAA and UAV rules of flying over people, etc.

It's a beautiful area, truly.... The campus looks right across the water at the city. How would you approach the situation... or just stay away?
I say, if you are in the right then fly. There are too many people making rules that have no authority to do so, fight for our rights and fly legally.
OH, and yes carry the new rules with you.
 
Do property owners own the airspace ? I was reading somewhere that owning a property entitles to reasonable amount of airspace over that property but if we fly at max 120m ( 400ft) are we really still trespassing ? At that altitude there are no identifiable details.
How do laws see this ?
Google street and satellite view shows details of every street and every property. All they do is blur the faces and license plates.
I don't remember them asking for my permission to take detailed view of my place :p
 
Do property owners own the airspace ? I was reading somewhere that owning a property entitles to reasonable amount of airspace over that property but if we fly at max 120m ( 400ft) are we really still trespassing ? At that altitude there are no identifiable details.
How do laws see this ?
Google street and satellite view shows details of every street and every property. All they do is blur the faces and license plates.
I don't remember them asking for my permission to take detailed view of my place :p
I believe after anything over 100 feet above any structure is FAA airspace.????
 
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I'm not saying they don't control all air space. My point is that you with a drone can fly over private property at 100 feet or above, and that the owner of private property has
a right to consider it an invasion of privacy to fly below that.
I'm sure I've seen that somewhere and will check it out.
This has not been proven in court as of yet.

Many people "Cite" the US vs Causby case from 1946 (just a day or two before sUAS were on the scene) which a chicken farmer claimed damages from the US Military flying over his farm as low as 83'AGL. But this was 1/2 mile from the runway so it IMHO shouldn't have been an issue but somehow it was and the land owner "sort of" won the case. He was awarded some $$ but the rulings left things very much "open ended" with no specific heights etc set in stone.

You'll see various "claims" online from 1' - 500' up to space all claiming land owner has rights up to "That" height but nothing has been determined since 1946.
 
You have to consider that in 1946 planes were a lot noisier, so even at 1/2 mile from airport and especially within 80ft above ground, that would be a nuisance, and the complaint was about noise in that case. Heck up until 1990 I used to live 5 miles from LaGuardia airport, right under the flight path and that was horrible during warmer days with windows open. I'd take the noise of a quad over those jets any day.
 
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You have to consider that in 1946 planes were a lot noisier, so even at 1/2 mile from airport and especially within 80ft above ground, that would be a nuisance, and the complaint was about noise in that case. Heck up until 1990 I used to live 5 miles from LaGuardia airport, right under the flight path and that was horrible during warmer days with windows open. I'd take the noise of a quad over those jets any day.

US v. Causby, 328 US 256, 258 (1946).
Yes, some of the planes flying 60 to 80 feet over the Causby's farm looked like this:

1595036520841.png

In 1946, a North Carolina chicken farmer sued the United States government for trespass by air. The US navy and army operated an airstrip adjacent to the chicken farm, such that the glide path from the runway extended directly over the farmer’s house and outbuildings. Normal glide paths put aircraft 67 feet above the house, 63 feet above the barn, and 18 feet above the highest tree. Bombers, fighters, and other aircraft routinely flew over the farm, causing quite a disturbance:

From the court's opinion:

The noise is startling. And at night the glare from the planes brightly lights up the place. As a result of the noise, respondents had to give up their chicken business. As many as six to ten of their chickens were killed in one day by flying into the walls from fright. The total chickens lost in that manner was about 150. Production also fell off. The result was the destruction of the use of the property as a commercial chicken farm. Respondents are frequently deprived of their sleep and the family has become nervous and frightened.



1595036872643.png
 
US v. Causby, 328 US 256, 258 (1946).
Yes, some of the planes flying 60 to 80 feet over the Causby's farm looked like this:

View attachment 108117

In 1946, a North Carolina chicken farmer sued the United States government for trespass by air. The US navy and army operated an airstrip adjacent to the chicken farm, such that the glide path from the runway extended directly over the farmer’s house and outbuildings. Normal glide paths put aircraft 67 feet above the house, 63 feet above the barn, and 18 feet above the highest tree. Bombers, fighters, and other aircraft routinely flew over the farm, causing quite a disturbance:

From the court's opinion:

The noise is startling. And at night the glare from the planes brightly lights up the place. As a result of the noise, respondents had to give up their chicken business. As many as six to ten of their chickens were killed in one day by flying into the walls from fright. The total chickens lost in that manner was about 150. Production also fell off. The result was the destruction of the use of the property as a commercial chicken farm. Respondents are frequently deprived of their sleep and the family has become nervous and frightened.



View attachment 108119
I read about the Causby suit... But a B52 flying overhead at 80 feet and a Mavic Mini at that height are two different things entirely, no? As I mentioned in another thread, there is an attempt to created a unified law that takes many circumstances into account.

But getting back to my original thoughts in originating the thread... I'm less concerned about staying within the law, which I will attempt to always be, and more concerned with an over-agressive authority figure who may have been briefed about a legacy local drone ordinance that has since been over-ridden by state law- but not briefed in the fact that their local ordinance was nullified. And then there are the judges who have the attituted of "the law is what I say it is". I suppose there will be a point when I'll get out there at 5am and test fate. But I will have my pocket camera ready to record any exchanges should there be any challenges to my presence.
 
I read about the Causby suit... But a B52 flying overhead at 80 feet and a Mavic Mini at that height are two different things entirely, no? As I mentioned in another thread, there is an attempt to created a unified law that takes many circumstances into account.

But getting back to my original thoughts in originating the thread... I'm less concerned about staying within the law, which I will attempt to always be, and more concerned with an over-agressive authority figure who may have been briefed about a legacy local drone ordinance that has since been over-ridden by state law- but not briefed in the fact that their local ordinance was nullified. And then there are the judges who have the attituted of "the law is what I say it is". I suppose there will be a point when I'll get out there at 5am and test fate. But I will have my pocket camera ready to record any exchanges should there be any challenges to my presence.

Yes, Causby is a digression from your key issue and question. I think you framed the issue perfectly in first post. You are right that local ordinance is likely void due to pre emptive state law on subject. This is same situation faced by Lapeer in Michigan I believe it was. I will find link for you if you have not seen before. Yes, you must be very cautious for the exact reason you mention.
 
Don't avoid it, grab that bull by the horns... Go to city hall! Print a copy of the state law and take it with you.

That's what I did in my only experience dealing with large municipalities:

My wife and I spent a long weekend in a city we hadn't stayed at before. I took my Phantom just in case. Saturday morning I had some free time while my wife went shopping with a friend.

So I went to City Hall, told them where I was staying and asked if it was legal to fly drone there. A uniformed officer heard me ask the young guy guarding the door, and came over to help. To my surprise, he said the city and county had both decided to not pass any drone laws and as long as I followed FAA rules and regulations - go fly! So I did....
 
I believe after anything over 100 feet above any structure is FAA airspace.????

---------------------------

I read somewhere that the Supreme Court case in the 40's was based in a military base where planes passed about 83ft from a farm and the farmer alleged that the chickens get crazy and kill themselves running into the walls and for that reason the "private airspace" was set in 83ft... Well, I wish can complement this post, but the last thing I read about "private airspace" (to give a name) is that starts at 100ft to 500ft. That depends in the tallest structure in the property. About the airspace, the only one with power to regulate is the FAA exclusively. State and local governments only can regulate where you can take off and land.
 
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