Navigating the skies with a drone in Utah can be an exhilarating experience, but it comes with a set of responsibilities and legal obligations. Both hobbyist and commercial drone pilots must adhere to drone laws in Utah to ensure safe, legal drone operation.
In this article, we will explore the regulations governing drone operations in Utah for both recreational and commercial use, as well as the penalties for violating these laws.
Can You Fly a Drone in Utah?
Yes, you can fly a drone in Utah, but it is essential to abide by the rules and regulations set by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and local authorities. Whether you are a hobbyist or a commercial drone pilot, familiarizing yourself with these guidelines is vital to prevent any legal issues.
- Can You Fly a Drone in Utah?
- Federal Drone Laws in Utah
- State Drone Laws in Utah
- Local Drone Laws in Utah
- Penalties for Violating Drone Laws in Utah
- FAQs About Drone Laws in Utah
Federal Drone Laws in Utah
As a drone pilot in Utah, you are required to follow the federal regulations outlined by the FAA including:
Commercial Drone Operators
To fly a drone for business use in Utah, you must:
- Secure a Remote Pilot Certificate from the FAA to show you underwent the necessary education for safe commercial drone operation
- Register your drone with the FAA
Recreational Drone Flying
Recreational drone flyers do so as a hobby. To fly a drone as a hobbyist in Utah, you must:
- Register your drone with the FAA
- Pass The Recreational UAS Safety Test (TRUST) to show your knowledge of safety guidelines and regulations
- Adhere to safety rules provided by Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) for drone operation, including avoiding airports/other restricted areas and flying under 400 feet.
Government Employee Drone Operation
Government employees in Utah, including those from fire departments or the police force, must comply with the FAA’s Part 107 rule or obtain a federal Certificate of Authorization (COA) to operate drones for official purposes.
Note: Please note that drone regulations are subject to change, and this information is accurate as of the last update. Always remember to conduct thorough research and stay up-to-date with the latest drone laws in Utah to enjoy a smooth and responsible flying experience.
State Drone Laws in Utah
All drone pilots must also be aware of state-wide drone laws in Utah. In addition to the federal rules above, follow the state drone laws outlined by the Utah Department of Transportation and the Utah State Legislature including:
- HB 217 // 2017 states that you may not intentionally harm, chase, or disturb livestock with a UAS.
- SB 111 // 2017 is a law that preempts local drone laws and exempts
- Outlines UAS use by law enforcement, including requiring them to create an official record for drone use
- Defines flying a UAS that carries a weapon as a class B misdemeanor
- Includes using a drone to unlawfully surveillance a property as part of trespassing
- States that someone lawfully using a drone for commercial or education purposes is not guilty of a privacy violation.
- Voyeurism, which is a class B misdemeanor, now includes using a drone to record video of a person in certain situations.
- HB 296 // 2015 permits law enforcement to use a drone to collect testing site data or look for a missing person.
- SB 167 // 2014 requires government entities to have a warrant to use a UAS for data collection.
- SB 196 // 2014 requires government agencies to have a warrant to use a drone in any place where a person should reasonably expect privacy.
- 65A-3-2.5 prohibits drone operation in any area under temporary flight restriction according to the FAA
- Bans drone use in any area designated as a wildland fire scene without prior permission
- 76-6-2-206(2)(A) // 2017 states that you may not operate a drone over private property without authorization from the property owner.
Local Drone Laws in Utah
Different municipalities in Utah may have their own local drone laws and regulations. We were not able to locate any specific local drone laws in Utah. Make sure to research and understand the specific rules in your area of operation to avoid any legal complications.
Penalties for Violating Drone Laws in Utah
Violating drone laws in Utah can result in severe penalties. For example, flying a drone with a weapon attached is a class B misdemeanor in Utah. Penalties include up to a $1,000 fine and up to 180 days in jail.
FAQs About Drone Laws in Utah
Can I fly a drone over private property in Utah?
No, you may not fly a drone over private property in Utah without prior authorization from the property owner.
Are there no-fly zones for drones in Utah?
Yes, there are designated no-fly zones in Utah, including airports, military installations, and government buildings. Be sure to check for any restricted areas before flying your drone.
Can I fly a drone in a national park in Utah?
No, you cannot fly a drone in a national park in Utah. Drone flying is generally prohibited in national parks in Utah to protect wildlife and preserve the natural environment. Some parks may have special permits available for research and commercial purposes, but recreational drone use is typically not allowed.
Can you fly a drone in Zion National Park?
No, you cannot fly a drone in Zion National Park as all UAS use is prohibited according to the National Park Service.
Where can I fly a drone in Utah?
You can fly your drone in many great places throughout Utah including:
Antelope Island State Park
Great Salt Lake