Responsibilities as a Drone Operator
All small unmanned aircraft system (sUAS), or “drone” operators are responsible for understanding the rules and regulations for safely flying their drone in the National Airspace System (NAS). Operators are responsible for damage or injury caused by their use, including activities that could cause endangerment or interference with aircraft in flight. Hobbyist and business users both have responsibilities for the safe and regulated use of drones, including registration and certification requirements.
For specific regulations and guidelines on operating drones, visit the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) UAS website, “Getting Started,” at www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started for the latest rules, guidelines, and instructions for registration and certification. Another resource for information is www.knowbeforeyoufly.org.
sUAS Restrictions at the Combat Center
Restricted Airspace (RA) supports training exercises at the Combat Center that include live-fire and combined-arms activities. This restricted airspace, known as the R-2501 complex, covers the majority of the installation, including Combat Center Mainside and Camp Wilson areas.
Operation of any sUAS/drone is strictly prohibited in the installation’s airspace without express permission of the Commanding General MAGTFTC/MCAGCC. Any unauthorized drone activity in the installation’s airspace puts Marines and aircraft in danger, and degrades training quality; violation of this restriction can lead to legal action. Operators who do not comply may incur criminal charges under 49 USC 46307. In addition to airspace over the Combat Center, drone use is prohibited within active Temporary Special Use Airspace (TSUA) and Controlled Firing Area (CFA) adjacent to the R-2501 in Johnson Valley. Drone operators are encouraged to check Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) prior to flight operations and to call the Command Duty Officer at 760-830-7200 or Range Control (BEARMAT) on frequency 127.125 for the status of all SUA.
If you have questions about drone use at the Combat Center or observe noncompliant drone activity in the Combat Center airspace please call us at 760-830-3737 day or night.