DELMAR, N.Y. (NEWS10) — After a licensed drone operator was caught flying a drone over a couple of elementary schools in Bethlehem Central School District, the district has now filed a complaint with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). In New York, no laws prohibit the use of licensed drones around schools. But the district said in a statement that is unsettling for both families and the district itself.
The only issue is that a person flying a drone over a school is not recognized as unauthorized, according to the agency. Crystal Essiaw, from the FAA, in a statement:
“The FAA looks into all reports of any unauthorized drone operations and investigates when appropriate. The agency does not have criminal prosecution authority.”
There are a variety of drones sold at stores, but the agency says drone operators should still pay attention to both FAA and local laws. Including when a drone requires a license.
They say if a drone operator is causing public safety concerns that can endanger an aircraft or people on the ground, that person can face a fine of up to $30,000 and have their license suspended or revoked.
The agency is also encouraging the public to report suspicious drone activity to local law enforcement to help discourage dangerous or illegal activity.
In the meantime, Bethlehem Central School District says it is still awaiting a response to the complaint and hopes there will be some legislative action to help with their concern.