Click on the links below to view the answers to frequently asked questions.
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Can I use model drone operator or buy a drone and shoot my own pictures myself for my business?
The FAA states that an individual must have a Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate to use a drone for any commercial purposes. "Any operation not conducted strictly for hobby or recreation purposes could not be operated under the special rule for model aircraft. Clearly, commercial operations would not be hobby or recreation flights. Likewise, flights that are in furtherance of a business, or incidental to a person’s business, would not be a hobby or recreation flight." See the FAA Model Aircraft Special Rule, page 10.. While some may tell you that the exchange of compensation is what constitutes commercial operations, the FAA has indicated that incidental business use, or use that furthers a business, is not allowed for recreational drone operators who do not hold a Remote Pilot Certificate.
I am interested in drones, so how do I get started?
The FAA has specific guidance to get you started flying.
Do I have to register my drone?
If your drone is over 0.55 pounds, you must register your drone either as a Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate commercial operator, or as a Section 336 model operator. You must be 13 years of age to register your drone. You can register with the FAA here.
Can I fly my model drone anywhere and anytime?
Both model drone operators and commercial Part 107 drone operators must observe safety guidelines and airspace restrictions. Since there is an active helipad in Rolla now, all drone operators must notify Phelps Air prior to drone flights. Drone operators should also be aware of the approaches for Rolla Downtown Airport (KK07). The approach for runway 27 passes over Rolla in a line roughly just south of Walmart through Southview Park, and extends for five nautical miles. A special waiver is required from the FAA for flights at night.
Is there an easy place to find all drone rules and regulations?
Yes, the FAA has a Unmanned Aircraft Systems Regulations and Policies web page with links to all relevant rule and regulations for model, government, and commercial drone operators.
Where can I find the answers to other drone questions?
The FAA has an excellent FAQ web page.
How do I know if a drone pilot is legally licensed?
If someone is flying in the furtherance of a business, whether or not they receive compensation, the FAA has stated they must have a Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate. You can verify their certificate using the FAA's Airman Inquiry web page. If they have a Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate, they are required to carry it when flying a drone. The certificate looks like the following:

Who do I notify if someone is flying a drone dangerously?
If someone is flying a drone in a dangerous manner, you should call your local law enforcement. You may refer them to the FAA's Law Enforcement Guide for Suspected Unauthorized Operations. You can also report the incident to the FAA Flight Standards District Office.