OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. --
Commercial, off-the-shelf remotely piloted aircraft, or drones, continue to be an item of interest for gift-giving during the holiday season.
As a result, a policy has been established to ensure the public is aware of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Department of Defense (DoD) regulations regarding the safety and security of resources and personnel on military installations.
Drones, which are designated as small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) by the DoD and the FAA, are unmanned aircraft weighing less than 55 pounds.
“As the popularity continues to rise with drones, we want to make sure people are aware of the rules and policies,” said Tech. Sgt. Jennifer Evans, 55th Security Forces Squadron Information Fusion Cell NCO in charge. “We want people to have fun with their drones, but ensure they are doing it in approved locations away from Offutt AFB.”
Anyone who wishes to request permission to operate commercial sUAS on Offutt must meet certain requirements. This includes certifying and registering the sUAS as well as following the federal requirements referenced at the FAA's website.
All must also follow the approved map which shows the area approved for flight of sUAS.
Finally, sUAS operators should note that Offutt main base is designated as Class C airspace, so an FAA waiver must be approved 90 days prior to sUAS utilization. The form can be found at https://www.faa.gov/uas/request_waiver/.
“If you see a sUAS flying in restricted airspace, just remember the acronym DRONE - Detect, Report, Observe, Notice features, Execute appropriate reporting,” Evans said. “This will help 55th SFS members keep our base, assets, personnel and their families safe.”
Any questions or concerns may be directed to local security forces squadrons.