Pennsylvania Drone Laws 2021: Where to Fly Drone in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania Drone Laws

Drones are no longer toys. The government is trying to regulate drone use because they have become so popular. Drones are now an integral part of society and can be used for many purposes. They can also cause serious harm when misused. The regulatory framework for drone use is constantly evolving and changing.

If you want to fly a drone in Pennsylvania, you will need to know the Drone Laws here. Below is a guide to help you understand Pennsylvania drone laws. Let’s get going!

Drone Laws in Pennsylvania

Drone Laws in Pennsylvania

Federal Drone Laws in Pennsylvania

These drone laws, which apply to all states in the U.S., including Pennsylvania, were created by the federal government.

In Pennsylvania, you can fly a drone commercially as a pilot. For work/business purposes, you must follow the FAA’s Part 107 Small UAS Rule (Part 107). This includes passing the FAA Aeronautical Knowledge Test to receive a Remote Pilot Certificate.

Pennsylvania allows hobbyists to fly drones. The FAA requires you to pass the Recreational UAS Safety Test. The FAA also requires you to adhere to the rules for recreational model aircraft. You will need to pay $5 to register your drone if it weighs in at more than 0.55 lbs (250g). Additional rules apply to altitude and airspace, as well as keeping your drone in line of sight while you fly.

You can fly a drone in Pennsylvania as a government employee (i.e., for a police or fire department), or you can operate under the Part 107 rule of the FAA or get a federal Certificate of Authorization.

Please note: This page is intended to be used as an informational tool and not replace legal counsel.

Pennsylvania State Drone Laws

These drone laws applied to Pennsylvania and were established by the Pennsylvania General Assembly.

Title 18 Sec. Title 18 Sec.

It is illegal to use a drone to inadvertently or knowingly monitor another person in private places, transmit, deliver or furnish contraband, or provide, transmit, transmit, or otherwise act in an unprofessional manner.

Title 53 Sec. Title 53 Sec.

Preempts Title 18 Sec. The provisions of Title 18 Sec. 3505 shall prevail over any ordinance, resolution, or rule of a municipality that regulates the operation or ownership of unmanned aircraft. A municipality may not regulate the operation or ownership of unmanned aircraft unless authorized by statute.

State Parks Restrictions

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural, Resources drones cannot be flown within “designated flying spots” in the following state parks: Beltzville State Park; Benjamin Rush State Park; Hillman State Park; Lackawanna State Park; Prompton State Park, and Tuscarora State Park. All other state parks prohibit drone use.

Part 107 regulations apply to all drone pilots who operate commercially in Pennsylvania.

Read also do I have to register my drone? and how to register a drone here.

Local Drone Laws in Pennsylvania

These drone laws are only applicable to specific regions, cities, or counties in the state of Pennsylvania. Different authorities created them within the state.

Title 53 Sec. Title 53 Sec. 305 states that no Pennsylvania county, borough, incorporated municipality, or municipality can regulate the operation or ownership of unmanned aircraft. Title 18 Sec. 18 Pennsylvania State Code preempts all municipal rules. 3505 and the FAA’s rules to fly a drone.

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Best Places to Fly Drones in Pennsylvania State

Best Places to Fly Drones in Pennsylvania State

Best Places to Fly Drones In Philadelphia

Fairmount Park is the best place to fly drones around Philadelphia.

Fairmount Park (PA)

  • Address: Reservoir Dr, Philadelphia, PA 19119, USA
  • Coordinates: 39.9881° N, 75.1971° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

Fairmount Park in Philadelphia is the largest public recreation space. It is also the historical name for several parks in the region. The property’s 2,052 acres open space is divided by the Schuylkill River, which is appropriately named East Park or West Park.

There are many attractions on this property, some more obvious than others. Concourse Lake, the surrounding areas of wetlands, and mature forests offer incredible aerial drone footage.

A few other structural attractions are worth mentioning. The Carousel House Farm and Shofuso Japanese Gardens House are just a few of the attractions. If the sculpture is your thing, make sure to see Saint George and The Dragon or The Journeyer statues.

Bartram’s Garden Dock and Community Boathouse, PA

  • Address: 2601 S 53rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19143, USA
  • Coordinates: 39.9335° N, 75.2082° W
  • Airspace: Class B (Controlled)

The Bartram’s Garden Dock & Community Boathouse is located next to Philadelphia’s historic Bartram’s Garden. It is peacefully located on the Schuylkill River’s shore. The dock serves as an access point for boaters, anglers, scenic river cruises, and other river programs. This spot is where nature and industry blend in harmony.

The area available to drone pilots is vast and allows them to capture the natural surroundings and old structures. To the north of the Boathouse is an active steel railway bridge. A working locomotive will soon be visible to fans of bridges and trains.

Boathouse Row, PA

  • Address: 1 Boathouse Row, Philadelphia, PA 19130, USA
  • Coordinates: 39.9696° N, 75.1876° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

The 19th-century Boathouse Row in Philadelphia is an iconic landmark that celebrates Philadelphia’s diversity. It is a tribute to areas of historical, cultural, and sporting importance.

The old Boathouse Row can be found on the Schuylkill River’s eastern bank, just north of Fairmount Waterworks. This is a great spot for drone pilots, especially at night. The lights turn on at dusk, creating stunning reflections on the water’s surface.

Schuylkill River Park, PA

  • Address: 300 S 25th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103, USA
  • Coordinates: 39.9488° N, 75.1818° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

Another attraction in Philadelphia is the Schuylkill River Park. It’s located along the banks of the river. It is a popular spot for both locals and tourists to enjoy a relaxing time. You’ll find peaceful green lawns here and well-maintained community gardeners. There are also a few fenced-in dog parks.

The rec center has several community events and offers sports facilities. Drone pilots love to capture the beautiful river views, bridges, and surrounding landscapes.

Best Places to Fly Drones In Pittsburgh

Point of View Park is the best place to fly drones around Pittsburgh.

Point of View Park, PA

  • Address: 1435 Grandview Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15211, USA
  • Coordinates: 40.4393° N, 80.0213° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

Point of View Park, a charming Pittsburgh parklet located on Mt. Washington. Its name comes from the Point of View Sculpture. This bronze statue shows George Washington in conversation with Guyasut, the leader of the Seneca people.

Point of View Park provides a unique vantage point unlike any other. Drones can capture incredible views of downtown Pittsburgh, including the twisting Ohio River and many bridges.

Aspinwall Riverfront Park, PA

  • Address: 285 River Ave, Aspinwall, PA 15215, USA
  • Coordinates: 40.4892° N, 79.9042° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

Aspinwall Riverfront Park is located just outside Pittsburg on the banks of the Allegheny River. This small but beautiful recreation area is located just a mile from Highland Park Lock and Dam.

You can use an action drone to film yourself kayaking along the river in summer and sledding in winter. If you prefer picturesque aerial views, you can film the dam and surrounding landscapes, as well as the industrial railway bridge.

Southside Riverfront Park, PA

  • Address: Pittsburgh, PA 15203, USA
  • Coordinates: 40°25’45.0″N 79°57’53.4″W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

The Southside Riverfront Park & Trail is located on Pittsburgh’s Monongahela River banks near the bowstring arch Birmingham Bridge. It is part of Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers Heritage Trail. This park is popular for people who want to relax, stroll, have a picnic, or boat. Camera drones love the Birmingham Bridge, the scenic riverscapes, the boats, and the amazing Pittsburgh skyline.

West Park Lake Elizabeth, PA

  • Address: Lake Elizabeth, Pittsburgh, PA 15212, USA
  • Coordinates: 40.4539° N, 80.0124° W
  • Airspace: Class G (Uncontrolled)

If you are looking for smaller recreational spaces, then head over to West Park-Lake Elizabeth in Pittsburgh. The small, manmade lake created by the park’s beautiful landscape is the new pond.

You don’t need to fly far to capture West Park, a beautiful spot for drone footage. You will be able to see tranquil water and picturesque green lawns from this spot. It offers views of distant cities and trains as a backdrop.

FAQs about Pennsylvania Drone Law

FAQs about Pennsylvania Drone Law

It is a crime under Pennsylvania UAS Law to operate a drone. This includes surveillance of another person in private places; conduct of surveillance that puts another person at risk of bodily injury; and.

Source: https://www.penndot.gov/Doing-Business/Aviation/Licensing%20and%20Safety/Pages/Unmanned-Aircraft-Systems-(Drone)-Information.aspx

 Can I fly my drone in a residential area?

Small drones and small model aircraft can be flown in residential, commercial, and industrial areas. Always fly safely.

Source: https://register-drones.caa.co.uk/drone-code/where-you-can-fly

How can I register my drone in PA?

Register a drone online with FAA DroneZone. The drone must be less than 55 pounds.

Registering Information:

  • Email address
  • Physical address and mailing address (if different from physical address)
  • Make and model of your drone (if flying under part 107)
  • Credit card or debit card

Source: https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/register_drone/

Conclusion

Now you have all the information necessary to fly your drone safely in Pennsylvania State. Would you please share this information with anyone you think might be interested?

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