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USA Flying inside a large building. And the FAA

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The “line” is determined by lawyers and often who has the most $$. I know, however, that as a commercial 107 operator, he would be held to a much high degree of responsibility. Any time you put on the hat of “professional”, you are graded much differently by lawyers and a jury. That is why I made the “foolish” comment. So many of these threads are about VLOS and 400’ without the appearance of a direct threat to people. This was different. I didn’t mean it as a personal insult. In the context of his post I think is wiser to qualify any response about the risk in addition to the legality. Flying inside in the vacinity of people is a lot different risk than exceeding VLOS in the middle of a farm field. No offense to you personally was intended.
OK... this is making more sense. I got hung up on the FAA having any real jurisdiction indoors.
 
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I probably didn't express myself as clearly as I could. I always try not to say anything in a pubic forum that I wouldn't face-to-face but sometimes written words don't do as well. The more I think about it, the more that I believe you might be right on the legal aspects. If the FAA doesn't care about the safety of indoor flight activity, it must be because the don't have the authority because they obviously believe the same activity outdoors is dangerous. If so, that raises a whole lot of questions...What is the expectation of the public that believes the FAA protects their safety indoors as well as outdoors? If it were possible to fly an aircraft within an enclosure, would the public or passengers paying for a ride not feel that the activity should be regulated by the FAA and safe? I wonder what kind of answers I will get from the GADO. In either case, if the post involved an activity that would be illegal outside, I would strongly recommend he not do it simply because the FAA doesn't regulate it. Too much inherent risk, IMO.
 
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You don’t need a 107 to fly indoors as the FAA has zero authority indoors. So the 107 point is moot.

And, more importantly, ‘indoors’ is ALL private property! From the floor to the roof and everywhere in between.
 
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Not sure what you meant by “private”. The post did not identify the owner of the indoor facility. But if it was private, you would probably be right as long as the activity was legal. However, there are thousands large indoor public venues owned by the fed/city/state. They may be managed by a private company but not owned or governed by that management group.
 
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I am not an attorney, but have done some research into this and spoken to attorneys and also asked about it in a UAS FAA webinar a couple of years ago, as I have done some commercial flying inside buildings that were surrounded by class B and Class D airspace. Based on that, my understanding is that the FAA's authority is limited to the National Air Space, and that does NOT include any portion of the space inside buildings. So none of the FAA's regulations would apply to anything done inside a building, including the prohibitions regarding flying over people. And the fact that the OP said "As a 107 Pilot" does not change that, since that status is irrelevant to operations indoors. However, just because the FAA's rules don't apply indoors does not mean that their safety concerns aren't relevant indoors. I always try to fly my drone safely for the basic ethical reason that I have no right to endanger others with my drone. The fact that the FAA rules don't apply indoors does not change that for me. I would also expect that the building owners would have "jurisdiction" over what you can do with your drone in their building, and of course you'd need to comply with their rules too.
 
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I am not an attorney, but have done some research into this and spoken to attorneys and also asked about it in a UAS FAA webinar a couple of years ago, as I have done some commercial flying inside buildings that were surrounded by class B and Class D airspace. Based on that, my understanding is that the FAA's authority is limited to the National Air Space, and that does NOT include any portion of the space inside buildings. So none of the FAA's regulations would apply to anything done inside a building, including the prohibitions regarding flying over people. And the fact that the OP said "As a 107 Pilot" does not change that, since that status is irrelevant to operations indoors. However, just because the FAA's rules don't apply indoors does not mean that their safety concerns aren't relevant indoors. I always try to fly my drone safely for the basic ethical reason that I have no right to endanger others with my drone. The fact that the FAA rules don't apply indoors does not change that for me. I would also expect that the building owners would have "jurisdiction" over what you can do with your drone in their building, and of course you'd need to comply with their rules too.

Thanks for your input. I was wrong about the legality. I would, however, recommend that anyone flying indoors, especially “professional” pilots with a 107, not do anything inside that the FAA would consider a violation on the outside. God forbid, something would happen, I am sure an attorney would challenge why, as a professional pilot, you would do something inside that you knew was dangerous outside and a violation of FAA regs.
 
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Yes, that is exactly my reading of FAA regs. They have no jurisdiction indoors at all... nothing. And, no, I would not pay to defend him. That's not my business and even if it were, I haven't been collecting premiums from him. He should have insurance and if it were me I'd have a discussion with that insurance company. They certainly have a right to object to activities that may be excluded under the policy.

When I purchased insurance thru Global, the policy asked if I was flying indoors. I replied no because I haven't had a need to do so on a commercial level. If I had the need to I would purchase that rider and follow the rules if any the insurance company required.
 
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If as a 107 pilot (or any for that matter) being asked to fly inside a large building, does the FAA control from the floor up or from the roof up?
I ask for 2 different reasons. If it is only from the roof up, does the class of airspace matter and can you fly over people that are in the building.

I'm sorry if the answer is obvious, but I was asked by a client and could not find that answer for him, so I was hoping you bright folks could lend a hand.

Thanks, rb
Ask your local FSDO. A lot more reliable than any answers you'll get here.
 
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Was there ever an answered? Seems to me that if the FAA has no control of automobile driving, then why do you have report if you get a DUI? Therefore it seems to me if you flew over people indoors and somebody was injured they could pull your ticket.
 
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Personally, i think it’s just a bad idea to fly over people in general. Have been asked a couple times and as a rule we say no. Not worth the risk.
 
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I understand your perspective but it is not correct in the context of the poster's question. The post was, "as a 107 pilot..." Based on that, he is operating under 107 regulations and implied that as he was being asked to do the flight. On that basis, the 107 regs would apply to flight near persons. It would be ludicrous to say that, if for example, he was commercially flying his drone within a large covered building in the proximity of people, he would not have to comply with those proximity regs. Your answer to the poster is that if he wants to fly his drone commercially, he can do so without registering, without complying with his 107 and over people. Are you willing to pay his defense costs if he goes ahead and takes the job?

107 does not apply indoors. The FAA does not regulate flight indoors. He is not considered to be operating in the National Airspace indoors. Its that simple. You don't have to be registered, or for that matter, certified to fly indoors.
 
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Thanks for your input. I was wrong about the legality. I would, however, recommend that anyone flying indoors, especially “professional” pilots with a 107, not do anything inside that the FAA would consider a violation on the outside. God forbid, something would happen, I am sure an attorney would challenge why, as a professional pilot, you would do something inside that you knew was dangerous outside and a violation of FAA regs.
"and a violation of FAA regs." You can't violate FAA regulations since they do not apply indoors. It would be like "breaking " maritime regulations while flying an airplane...
Was there ever an answered? Seems to me that if the FAA has no control of automobile driving, then why do you have report if you get a DUI? Therefore it seems to me if you flew over people indoors and somebody was injured they could pull your ticket.

"if you flew over people indoors and somebody was injured they could pull your ticket." Heh? How can the FAA pull your "ticket" if you are not operating in the national airspace ?
 
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Makes sense I guess. If you were in any class airspace (B, C, D, E) surface on up, but inside a building, you'd be pretty silly to request clearance.
 

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