As we enter our summer fire season, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office և California Forest Fire Department (CAL FIRE) reminds the public that flying a drone near or over a wildfire is against the law. Firefighting aircraft can be deployed to disrupt firefighting operations. Time is of the essence.
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If you fly, we can not
Flying over or near a drone is dangerous, it can cost lives.
In the event of a forest fire, the crew relies heavily on helicopters, planes, and other large aircraft to deliver gallons of water or fire retardants. Planes fly very low and enter quickly. Air crews keep in touch with each other to coordinate efforts to fly safely.
Flying over a forest fire is not easy. The pilots sail in smoky, windy, turbulent conditions with little visibility, while focusing on extinguishing the flames. Drones և Firefighting planes fly in the same airspace at an altitude of about 200 feet above the ground. Drones are hard to spot, չկա there is no way to communicate with their pilots. Drones are dangerous because they can penetrate the helicopter rotors or enter the aircraft engine or hit the helicopter truck propeller.
Safety of air and ground personnel, as well as resources, come first. When a drone appears in a limited airspace, all fire-fighting aircraft are required to land until the airspace is clear to avoid a medium-term collision. This valuable time could be used to slow down or suppress the spread of wildfires. Delaying airborne response poses a threat to firefighters on the ground, residents, property, and surrounding communities.
Media representatives should also avoid drones, helicopters near forest fires, and never interfere with firefighting.
Know the Rules
In: Federal Aviation Administration (LITTLE) implements a Temporary flight restriction around: forest fires to protect aircraft involved in firefighting. A drone pilot found guilty of unintentionally interfering with firefighting or other emergency response operations could face up to one year in prison. On top of the prosecution, the fines for each violation can be up to $ 20,000. The FAA may suspend or revoke your unmanned aerial vehicle license. That too against: State law intervene in the actions of first responders during emergencies.
Remember. If you fly, we can not.
Follow the Sheriff’s Office և CAL FIRE on Twitter. @SDSheriff: և: @CALFIRESANDIEGO:,
This press release has been prepared San Diego County Sheriff’s OfficeThe views expressed herein are the property of the author.