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Drones

The North Carolina Film Office encourages productions to refer to the UAS/Drone resources below and to follow the links to learn more about responsible and safe flying in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and state regulations.

Federal Restrictions & Requirements

  • Commercial operators can operate drones under 14 CFR Part 107, also known as the Small UAS Rule. The rule requires the person operating a small unmanned aircraft system to either hold a remote pilot airman certificate with a small UAS rating or be under the direct supervision of a person who does hold a remote pilot certificate (remote pilot in command).

  • Commercial operators can also operate drones under an exemption authorized under Section 333 of the Federal Aviation Administration Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. This is a case-by-case exemption that must be applied for and approved by the FAA.

  • As an alternative to operating under Part 107 or a Section 333 exemption, a drone operator may apply for a federal Special Airworthiness Certificate from the FAA.

North Carolina Restrictions & Requirements

  • Commercial drone operators must be at least 16 years old.

  • Commercial drone operators must take and pass the N.C. Department of Transportation's Unmanned Aircraft System Operator's Knowledge Test - a prerequisite to applying for a state permit.

  • To obtain a permit, drone operators must provide proof of their remote pilot certificate or other authorization to conduct commercial unmanned aircraft system operations from the FAA (see above, "Federal Restrictions & Requirements").

  • Permitted operators agree to these terms and conditions.

For more information, please visit the North Carolina Department of Transportation Commercial Operators restrictions and requirements page.

Note that municipalities, and even some specific locations, may have additional restrictions with regards to use of UAS/Drones. Contact the state film office for specific city/town contacts.

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