FAA part 336 and part 101 Special Rules for Model Aircraft

Public Law 112-95, Section 336 (2012) states,

IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law relating to the incorporation of unmanned aircraft systems into Federal Aviation Administration plans and policies, including this subtitle, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration may not promulgate any rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft, or an aircraft being developed as a model aircraft, if

  1. the aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or recreational use;
    (2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;
    (3) the aircraft is limited to not more than 55 pounds unless otherwise certified through a design, construction, inspection, flight test, and operational safety program administered by a community-based organization;
    (4) the aircraft is operated in a manner that does not interfere with and gives way to any manned aircraft; 
    (5) when flown within 5 miles of an airport, the operator of the aircraft provides the airport operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the airport) with prior notice of the operation (model aircraft operators flying from a permanent location within 5 miles of an airport should establish a mutually-agreed upon operating procedure with the airport operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the airport).

FAA Part 101, Subpart E—Special Rule for Model Aircraft (essentially the same as 336)

Source: Docket FAA-2015-0150, Amdt. 101-9, 81 FR 42208, June 28, 2016, unless otherwise noted.

§101.41   Applicability.

This subpart prescribes rules governing the operation of a model aircraft (or an aircraft being developed as a model aircraft) that meets all of the following conditions as set forth in section 336 of Public Law 112-95:

(a) The aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or recreational use;

(b) The aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;

(c) The aircraft is limited to not more than 55 pounds unless otherwise certified through a design, construction, inspection, flight test, and operational safety program administered by a community-based organization;

(d) The aircraft is operated in a manner that does not interfere with and gives way to any manned aircraft; and

(e) When flown within 5 miles of an airport, the operator of the aircraft provides the airport operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the airport) with prior notice of the operation.

§101.43   Endangering the safety of the National Airspace System.

No person may operate model aircraft so as to endanger the safety of the national airspace system.

 

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