UAS at the White House

Today’s big news is the quadcopter that was found on the White House grounds.  An individual has reported to Secret Service that he was the user.   He says it was an accident, but was probably not aware that all of DC and much of the surrounding area is an ADIZ (Air Defense Identification Zone) and Flight Restricted Zone.   If you are curious, or hear others saying we need stricter rules for UAS, here are the regulations.  There have been incursions into this airspace by manned aircraft as well, I’d rather train people on current regulations than add duplicative ones.

Washington DC ADIZ FRZ
Washington DC ADIZ FRZ

Under NOTAM FDC 0/8326, flight within a 30 mile radius of Reagan National Airport is generally prohibited without specific authorization.  I won’t go over the specific requirements, but you can view them at the link to the NOTAM.  If you are going to be anywhere near this area, the FAA recommends that you get special awareness training before flight.  Repercussion for incursion include: civil penalties, criminal action, detainment for questioning, and deadly force against the aircraft.  If you are stopped, you’ll probably lose your UAS to the evidence black hole.  If you’ll recall, I wrote about a tourist who was stopped by DC park police.  He got off lightly and don’t rely on the same treatment.  Leave your UAS home on your next trip to DC!

The big news here in Connecticut is not the White House, but a white out!  I’m a big fan of snow, especially when I can ski on it.  That hasn’t been in the cards this year for many reasons, but here is a beautiful photo from Mount Washington.  They don’t need a storm for snow and wind.

East Snowfields of Mount Washington (Courtesy of http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-blogs/clarkb/my-favorite-pictures-part-3-skiing/83105)
East Snowfields of Mount Washington   (Used with permission)

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