Virginia is a lovely state with plenty to see and do; The Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia Beach, and Shenandoah National Park are just a few sights to explore in the state. All are drone-friendly locations where you can fly a drone. The state has experienced an inflow of drone pilots as the use of drones has grown.
A drone license is required for all commercial drone pilots in Virginia. First, register online to get an FAA tracking number, create an account, and pay $175 to take the Airmen knowledge exam. Pass the exam, then submit an application for your drone license and clear a TSA background check.
As a result of the invasion of drones, the state has enacted legislation restricting the usage of drones throughout the state. These restrictions are similar to those in other jurisdictions and are designed to safeguard everyone's safety.
How To Get A Drone License In Virginia
All commercial drone operators in Virginia must have a drone license. It is not difficult to obtain a drone license; nevertheless, you must be 16 years old. You must also be able to speak in English, meet the minimum mental and physical standards for drone pilots, and pass an FAA exam.
Passing the FAA Part 107 exam and obtaining your commercial drone pilot license can seem difficult and time-consuming, especially if you have no prior experience. It is a lot less difficult than most people think. The Part 107 drone license assures you know the basics in case something goes wrong.
You are breaching the law if you fly a commercial drone before getting a license. A fine of around $250,000, civil fines, and a three-year prison sentence are possible consequences. The first step in obtaining a drone license is to obtain an FAA tracking number, often known as an FTN.
You must first construct an Integrated Airman Certification and Rating Application Profile to get the number. With this number, create an account on the FAA testing website and select a convenient FAA testing location. Next, schedule an exam date and time that is convenient for you.
Bring any government-issued identification cards you may have to the exam. You can designate whether you need special accommodations throughout the exam during the registration process, such as a time extension, a left-hand mouse, or regular breaks owing to a reading or learning disability.
The test will take two hours to complete and will consist of 60 multiple-choice questions. The test includes questions about airspace classification, limitations, flight operations, drone rules, emergency procedures, and flight restrictions. Your knowledge exam results should be connected to your license application once completed.
After passing the test, you will be given a 17-digit identification number, which you must save. Return to the Integrated Airman Certification and Rating Application Profile website and fill out the form to get your license. The TSA will conduct a background check on you, which you must pass to obtain the license.
Drone License Virginia Cost
Drones are quickly gaining traction as the next big thing. Making money is the most tempting aspect of having a drone license. Despite its legal repercussions, businesses have embraced the remote pilot license. You must hold a drone license to work as a commercial drone pilot.
You must write and pass a knowledge exam to obtain a drone license. The cost of obtaining a drone license in Virginia is $175, including the exam cost. However, you will not be issued a license if you fail the exam. Only CATS receives the funds, which are used to reimburse them for the use of their equipment, testing supplies, and operating costs.
It is important to keep in mind that the testing money is not refundable. This implies that you will not receive a refund regardless of whether you pass or fail the exam. If you fail to attend your planned exam without prior notice, you may be charged again if you need to reschedule.
The money will not go to the Federal Aviation Administration. Getting a drone license demonstrates to others that you know what you are doing and how to do it correctly. When you buy a certificate, there are no hidden costs, and you may upgrade your license for free every 24 months.
Drone Registration Virginia
When it comes to drone operation, there are two types of drone pilots: leisure drone pilots and commercial drone pilots. Pilots flying drones as a hobby or for fun are recreational pilots. On the other hand, business drone pilots are drone operators who utilize their aircraft for for-profit and commercial purposes.
Drone registration is one of the most important parts of drone laws in every state in the United States. All recreational and commercial drone operators must register their drones with the FAA before flying them anywhere in Virginia. There is an exception to this restriction if the drone weighs less than 0.55 pounds.
Each registrant must provide their full name, email address, and mailing address, as well as the brand, serial number, and model of the drone they wish to fly. You must fill out and upload a registration form to register a drone. This form can be filled out online or at a state police station, a drone dealer, a county treasurer's office, or a municipal police station in person.
The $5 registration cost goes toward creating and maintaining a database of all registered drones in the United States. Ensure you do not fly your drone until the FAA registers it. You are breaking the law if you refuse to register a drone when needed.
Drone Laws Virginia
The Federal Aviation Administration regulates all drone activities in Virginia. Furthermore, the Virginia General Assembly has passed new legislation to guarantee the safety of drone activities in the state. Below are some of the drone laws in Virginia.
- Every drone operator in Virginia must be above 16 years old before attempting to pilot a drone.
- Flying a drone close to any airport in Virginia is highly illegal.
- Any law enforcement agency that wants to use a drone to search a suspected criminal's properties must obtain an approved search warrant.
- Drones are prohibited in Virginia's state parks and federal parks. The policy emphasizes safety, privacy, and noise issues.
- Using a drone in any Virginia state park or areas controlled by the Department of Conservation and Recreation is illegal. Only research-based operations or marketing reasons with a special permit are permitted.
- Using a drone to spy or peep over private property is illegal.
- Drones are permitted in the Fairfax County Parks as long as all drone operators obey all state laws.
- All drones must be operated within the pilot's line of sight.
- Operating a drone over a large group of people or in congested areas is illegal.
- All recreational drone pilots must stay clear of sensitive infrastructures.
- No drone operation, both commercial and recreational, must interfere with any military or police activities.
- If you have a physical and mental health condition that can interfere with your piloting, you must not fly a drone.
Virginia Drone Laws Over Private Property
Numerous reports have recently been of drones invading people's privacy and trespassing. Because there is no federal legislation preventing the use of drones over private property, Virginia has devised a method to control it. In Virginia, it is against the laws to operate a drone over private property without the property owner's approval.
There is no scarcity of gorgeous natural landscapes and striking metropolitan skylines to photograph in Virginia. Unfortunately, there seem to be many limits on where you may deploy and fly drones to get these incredible shots. As a drone pilot in Virginia, you must familiarize yourself with the laws to avoid violating them and getting into trouble for them.
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Shawn Manaher loves to play with new toys and dive into new hobbies. As a serial entrepreneur, work definitely comes first but there is always room for hobbies.