Massachusetts Drone Laws – Flying Freely!

This article includes a wealth of information for drone users in Massachusetts, including the Federal, State, and Local laws regarding drones.
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Last updatedLast updated: June 03, 2022
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Few views are as breathtaking as taking drone shots of the world around us. Whether it’s a panoramic shot of the skyline of Bish Bash Falls or a slow shot video of a sunset over the beautiful Cape Cod National Seashore, or even the winter shadows over Nantucket, drone footage captures imagery and video that’s impossible otherwise.

However, the dream of beautiful footage sadly comes with some limitations. Massachusetts has drone laws in place that keep not only people but their properties safe. Massachusetts drone laws ensure that drones are used responsibly. Below is a quick introductory guide to the drone laws in Massachusetts, united states of America.

General Drone Regulations in Massachusetts

Did you know that over half of Americans have seen a drone in action? Did you know that 8% of American citizens Trusted Source How Americans feel about drones and ways to use them | Pew Research Center While drones have become more prevalent, many Americans have reservations about where and under what circumstances their use should be allowed. www.pewresearch.org own a drone? Drones are becoming increasingly popular throughout the United States and the world. By 2022, there will be an estimated 450,000 commercial drones up from the 110,000 within America's current airspace Trusted Source FAA Projects Fourfold Increase in Commercial Drones by 2022 | WSJ U.S. regulators expect the number of commercial drones and people flying them to quadruple over the next five years, the latest positive indicator for the burgeoning industry. www.wsj.com . Recreational drones are estimated to reach nearly 2.4 million drones by 2021.

For drone enthusiasts and beginners alike, there’s often red tape and regulations between you and your destination. Make sure you’re aware of the responsibilities of drone users in Massachusetts before setting forth on a drone adventure.

Federal Drone Laws

Coming from the federal government, these are laws that apply to every state in the United States, including Massachusetts. Drone regulations within Massachusetts depend on what the drones are being used for.

There are three different requirements for drone laws depending on their purpose; most of these regulations are governed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

As a drone operator, there are two things on which one can’t compromise. Those two things are quality and safety. There are many different options even within a reasonable $2,000 budget for a quality drone.

Flying the Drones as a Commercial Pilot

Massachusetts Drone Laws - Flying Freely!

DHL is the first parcel service provider in the world to integrate a drone logistically into its delivery chain directly.

As a commercial drone pilot, you must follow the requirements and guidelines of the FAA's Part 107 Small UAS Rule (Part 107) Trusted Source Certificated Remote Pilots including Commercial Operators | FAA If you have a small drone that is less than 55 pounds, you can fly for work or business by following the Part 107 guidelines. www.faa.gov , which states that you can fly a drone under 55 pounds. These rules include passing the FAA’s aeronautical knowledge test to gain a remote pilot certificate.

Flying the Drones as a Hobbyist

Massachusetts Drone Laws - Flying Freely!

Any person can fly small drones in residential, recreational, commercial, and industrial areas.

As a hobbyist or drone enthusiast for fun or pleasure, your requirements under the FAA require you to follow the rules for recreational model aircraft. As well, you are required to take the Recreational UAS Safety Test (TRUST).there are additional rules and limitations regarding airspace and altitude.

Flying the Drones as a Government Employee

Massachusetts Drone Laws - Flying Freely!

The government can use drones to watch people, vehicles, and other subjects of interest from the air.

As a government employee, the requirements are slightly different. Operate under the restrictions under the FAA’s part 107 rule or gain a federal certification of authorization.

Flying the Drones as an Educational User

Massachusetts Drone Laws - Flying Freely!

Many districts now use drones as an educational tool in a current classroom curriculum.

These drones are fantastic tools to use in education as both a student and teacher. This allows a drone user an exception that allows for flying without complying with part 107. This includes various education institutes, JROTC programs, and educational programs by a recognized community-based organization.

State Drone Laws

Created by the Massachusetts general court of the entire state of Massachusetts, there are multiple laws set in place. Regarding drones, both the Massachusetts department of transportation and Massachusetts have but one state law about drones.

Without an authorized permit, drone users are prohibited from taking off or landing a drone within Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) properties unless it is an emergency as well as prohibiting a user from operating a drone over any land or waterways managed by the DCR.

In simple terms, it means that getting video footage of various conservation projects throughout Massachusetts is illegal without a permit.

These areas are gorgeous landscapes that make fantastic wedding photo backdrops. For many outdoor weddings, drones are used. These wedding photos can be magical with the right drone, with easy-to-use drones capturing every angle.

Local Drone Laws

Each local region, city, and counties have varied regulations when it comes to drone laws. Contact your local municipality to know for sure.

Standard Rules for Drones in Massachusetts

Even if the drone has a quality obstacle avoidance, 2-axis gimbal, anti-shake, and auto return home like the DEERC DE22 GPS Drone, it’s better to ask for permission than beg for forgiveness. Here is a list of standard rules for drone users throughout the states and within Massachusetts.

  1. Fly for the right reasons.
  2. Follow the safety guidelines of the FAA.
  3. Keep the drone within the user’s line of sight or another visual observer participant (a spotter) in direct contact with the user.
  4. Yield to oncoming crewed aircraft without interfering.
  5. Fly at or below 400′ with authorization.
  6. Complete The Recreational UAS Safety Test (TRUST) and carry proof of completion.
  7. Register your drones and carry proof of registration.
  8. Do not use your drone for dangerous activities.
  9. Do not interview with emergency response units or law enforcement such as police, EMTs, firefighters, and ambulances, to name a few.
  10. Do not fly while intoxicated by drugs, alcohol, or medication.

Helpful Notes for Operating Drones in Boston

Flying drones in Boston doesn’t have to be a nerve-wracking experience. Whether you’re getting amazing long-range footage or you’re exploring the edges of your community with the Holy Stone HS720 Drone, there are rules to follow. It can be fun and simple if you obey the Boston drone laws.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re flying drones for fun, for money, or work, there are still responsibilities that one must follow. With a fast-paced fixed-wing drone like the Parrot Swing & Fly Pad with more speed and efficiency than any quadcopters on the market, safety is an important priority.

Exploring the beauty of Massachusetts is a breathtaking sight. Using drones gives a perspective that few people have the privilege of seeing. However, before peeking from the sky, make sure to follow the regulations put forth for drone users in the United States of America. Keep a mind on the Massachusetts drone laws and keep your drone in the sky.

Getting those fantastic shots is worth the effort, but it’s also worth the effort of making sure it’s done right. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with your municipal authorities or the FAA if you have additional questions.

References

1.
How Americans feel about drones and ways to use them | Pew Research Center
While drones have become more prevalent, many Americans have reservations about where and under what circumstances their use should be allowed.
2.
FAA Projects Fourfold Increase in Commercial Drones by 2022 | WSJ
U.S. regulators expect the number of commercial drones and people flying them to quadruple over the next five years, the latest positive indicator for the burgeoning industry.
3.
Certificated Remote Pilots including Commercial Operators | FAA
If you have a small drone that is less than 55 pounds, you can fly for work or business by following the Part 107 guidelines.
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