Chase Flynn | UAV Coach

Where to Fly a Drone in Los Angeles

Recommended Posts

It's often challenging to find a legal, safe, and visually interesting location to fly your drone, especially in a densely populated area with one or more airports.

After a round of comprehensive research, our team compiled a list of where to fly a drone in Los Angeles. We also have this list of drone laws in California that might be helpful. 

Where do you like to fly your drone in Los Angeles? We welcome your comments/experiences below.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi folks,

So how do all these L.A. drone restrictions/laws exist in regard to FAA restrictions/laws? 

In the end, won't most/all of these L.A. restrictions be found to be in violation of FAA/federal law as the airspace is strictly under the control of the FAA and not local jurisdictions?  Localities can control the ground and what can be done on the ground (takeoff/landing), but they can't control the airspace.

Of course I know a person would have a legal battle, expenses, etc to fight the local laws, but in the end, that person would almost certainly win, correct?

What's the latest thinking on all this?

Thanks...

--

Bill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi @wsalopek

Welcome to the UAV Coach Community Forum! Understanding if state drone laws would be in violation with the federal drone laws has led to a lot of confusion. Various cities and states have passed their own drone laws that in many ways contradict the federal drone laws. Like you stated, states and cities do have jurisdiction over the land. As far as the airspace, only the FAA has jurisdiction over the airspace. 

Back in 2017, there was a case in Newton, Massachusetts where the city tried to enforce various restrictive drone regulations. An FAA certified drone pilot brought the case against the city and won. The federal judge declared that the City of Newton was trying to enforce laws that preempted federal laws.  

If you would like to read more about that case, here is the article

I am in no way offering any legal advice in this situation, I am just providing you with additional information.

I hope this helps! 

 - Chase 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for that Chase. Kinda hard to believe no one in LA has yet brought a case against the city. I'm all for safety and privacy, but if the city is doing something illegal, then they need to use other means to try accomplish their goals, and in the meantime leave safe drone pilots alone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a community member of Lake Hollywood, you would be wise to caution drone enthusiasts that this is a residential neighborhood and that any drones flying over or near homes will be considered a violation of AB-856 invasion of privacy and will absolutely be prosecuted.  There are many homes surrounding the lake at the 300 ft level. Furthermore, the park and sign area are often crowded with tourists which make drone flying illegal and unsafe. I suggest you remove this area from your list or amend with these cautions in mind.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, ccc said:

cautions in mind.

These are things that all responsible hobbyist keep in mind.   

Trolling UAV forums and threatening its members is not necessary.  

I suggest you move.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not trolling. I'm sure that the majority of the members here are responsible. This area has seen a huge uptick in crime and drone usage for home and car break-ins. Community member sent me this article as an FYI. I had to register and am not a drone hater. I honestly have had no issues. It's just when "the best" place articles are published often times people don't know the landscape. I would suggest that your members avoid week-ends if possible as the crowds are unbearable and there is an epidemic of car break-ins on Lake Hollywood Dr. I guess you could fly a drone over and see all the glass. I won't be commenting further.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@ccc if you’re not trolling your more than welcome to comment and participate here.  

I would simply point out that if crime is on the rise in that area and criminals are using drones, they’re likely not going to follow any rules anyway.  And they aren’t likely going to be on this or other forums.  

People who fly RC are not criminals and me personally am tired of being treated like a second class citizen.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

just an FYI, you CAN NOT fly a drone by the Pt Vicente lighthouse.  

I saw your post and thought that I could, being a new drone pilot.  I went there and was approached not only by the staff from the recreational center there, but by 2 cops that told me I was flying in a restricted air space and they could fine me on the first offense.

Also, about every 60 feet is a very small sign that says no drone flights.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the article. Was curious I'd any knows any good places in santa clarita or knows if castaic lake is a good, legal place to fly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/16/2020 at 1:37 PM, Jkemosabo said:

Thanks for the article. Was curious I'd any knows any good places in santa clarita or knows if castaic lake is a good, legal place to fly?

Most city parks are off limits but you can fly all around Lake Castaic. North of Castaic exit Templin Hwy and follow the road until it ends. It’s a start of a decent hiking trail and it’s a neat open space to fly especially in the spring when river actually flows. Boquet Cyn Reservoir is also good. Farther up the the 5 Pyramid Lake. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.