October 28, 2016
For Immediate Release
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – New security concerns for businesses, government facilities and private citizens arose last session and was addressed by House Bill 2599 which restricted flight of unmanned aircraft over locations and businesses that are considered critical infrastructure. Sen. Ron Sharp was the principal Senate author of the bill that he says will help better protect the privacy and security of Oklahoma businesses and facilities.
“What fences and barriers do to prevent trespassers at critical sites, House Bill 2499 is trying to do in the airspace with new technology of unmanned aircraft,” said Sharp, R-Shawnee.
HB 2599 restricts flights of drones over “critical infrastructure” less than 400 feet above ground level or past their fence lines. The bill also requires signage on such property forbidding flight of drones without site authorization. Violators can be found civilly liable for damages to the property, environment or human health.
Law enforcement, government, critical infrastructure facility owners and operators authorized by the FAA to conduct operations over that airspace are exempt under HB 2599. Part 107 rules were released in August of this year outlining federal rules for drones. Operators must maintain a visual line-of-sight during daylight operations and the Unmanned Ariel System (UAS) must weigh less than 55 lbs. and be registered. More information about drone statutes and rules may be addressed to the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission.
Rep. Justin Wood was the House author of HB 2599, which will go into effect November 1, 2016.
Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission
by Sandra Shelton, Director of Communications & Government Affairs
Phone: (405) 604-6900
110 N Robinson, Suite 200, Oklahoma City, OK 73102