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Drone Information/Regulations

Drones present a huge safety problem to airports and can cause untold damage and even loss of life. Over 1 million drones were sold last year. This year even more are expected to be sold and there will be a lot of people flying without the proper information. Our goal is to get this information shared as widely as possible to prevent accidents.

Here is a link to a professionally illustrated guide to make sure drone flyers know the laws:

Recreational Regulations for Operating Drones within 5 Mile Radius of Redmond Municipal Airport. A map of the 5-mile radius surrounding the airport can be referenced online Airport 5 Mile Radius Map

The City of Redmond and Redmond Municipal Airport (RDM) would like to remind residents and visitors of the FAA Regulations for UAS (Drone) Operators, especially the rules for operating drones within the vicinity of RDM. These regulations provide safety guidelines for UAS and requires all operators to notify the air traffic control tower in advance before flying within 5 miles of the airport. E-mail the RDM Tower

Additional FAA regulations for drone pilots operating in close proximity of an airport are as follows:

  • Know your risk and liability
  • Fly at or below 400 feet and remain below any surrounding obstacles when possible
  • Keep your UAS within visual line-of-sight at all times and use an observer to assist if needed
  • Be aware of airspace requirements and ALWAYS yield right of way to manned aircraft
  • Never fly near other aircraft (including other UAS and Hot Air Balloons)
  • Never fly near emergency response efforts such as fires, traffic accidents, etc.
  • Do not intentionally fly over unprotected persons or moving vehicles, and remain at least 25 feet away from individuals and vulnerable property
  • Do not fly under the influence or in adverse weather conditions such as in high winds or reduced visibility
  • Do not fly near or over sensitive infrastructure or property such as power stations, water treatment facilities, correctional facilities, heavily traveled roadways, government facilities, etc.
  • Check and follow all local laws and ordinances before flying over private property
  • Do not conduct surveillance or photograph persons in areas where there is an expectation of privacy without the individual’s permission

Flying a UAS during a Wildfire is extremely dangerous. The FAA puts Temporary Flight Restrictions, or TFRs, in place above wildfires and other hazardous conditions to allow first responders to do their jobs unimpeded and without danger to their aerial support. There should be no traffic within the boundaries of a TFR – manned or unmanned – except for those supporting the operations. Violating the TFR may endanger the safety of the operation, and in some cases, may ground search and rescue crews until the airspace is cleared, allowing the wildfire to spread. Before taking your UAS out for a flight, it is extremely important to check with the FAA to ensure that there are no TFRs in your area.  Visit: for more information.

The FAA states: “UAS Operators (both recreational and commercial) have a social responsibility to fly safely and intelligently. We will take action against anyone who operates irresponsibly to the full extent of the law.” Under current rules, reckless or irresponsible UAS Operators can face civil penalties up to $27,500. Criminal penalties include fines of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment for up to three years.

For more information on operating UAS (Drones) visit: or

Download the Know Before You Fly Brochure 

View Airspace Classifications

Download the FAA’s Smartphone safety application B4UFLY which provides real-time information about airspace restrictions and other flying requirements based on your GPS location.

Drones and Weapons, A Dangerous Mix

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is warning the general public that it is illegal to operate a drone with a dangerous weapon attached.

Perhaps you’ve seen online photos and videos of drones with attached guns, bombs, fireworks, flamethrowers, and other dangerous items. Do not consider attaching any items such as these to a drone because operating a drone with such an item may result in significant harm to a person and to your bank account.

Operating a drone that has a dangerous weapon attached to it is a violation of Section 363 of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act enacted Oct. 5, 2018. Operators are subject to civil penalties up to $25,000 for each violation, unless the operator has received specific authorization from the Administrator of the FAA to conduct the operation. “Dangerous Weapon” means any item that is used for, or is readily capable of, causing death or serious bodily injury.

Operators should keep in mind that federal regulations and statutes that generally govern drone operations still apply. Some state and federal criminal laws regarding weapons and hazardous materials may also apply to drone operators or manufacturers involved in certain operations.

Flying UAS for Work/Business

Request to Operate in Controlled Airspace

If you want to fly in controlled airspace (Class B, C, D, or surface area E), you will need to apply for an airspace authorization or airspace waiver prior to operation.

An airspace authorization is short term (up to 6 months) and grants access to a more limited operating area.

An airspace waiver is longer term (6 months to 2 years) and grants access to a bigger operating area.

  • You must provide additional information to justify the safety of your operation.
  • FAA will take longer to process your request because we need more time to perform a safety analysis.

Request to Operate in Controlled Airspace Form Instructions — PDF explains how to fill out this form.

Waiver Safety Explanation Guidelines — explains what to include in the “Description of your proposed operation” field.

We encourage applicants to review the instructions for completing this controlled airspace application

Below are the basic things an operator must know for flying under the small UAS rule (14 CFR part 107):

Pilot Requirements:

  • Must be at least 16 years old
  • Must pass an initial aeronautical knowledge test at an FAA-approved knowledge testing center
  • Must be vetted by the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA)

A person who already holds a pilot certificate issued under 14 CFR part 61 and has successfully completed a flight review within the previous 24 months can complete a part 107 online training course at to satisfy this requirement.

Earn WINGS or AMT Credit by completing an online course:

Follow Procedures The Buck Stops Here

Part 107 Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (small UAS) Recurrent

Part 107 Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (small UAS) Initial


Application Process

Schedule an appointment with a Knowledge Testing Center (KTC), which administer initial and recurrent FAA knowledge exams

View the list of Knowledge Testing Centers to find one near you.

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