2019 Oregon Drone Laws

Are you interested in flying a drone in Oregon, but not quite sure how to do so legally?  If so, keep reading.  There are a number of federal drone regulations that apply to every state, including Oregon, and these rules vary  depending on whether you intend to fly commercially or has a hobby.   But, nomatter where or why you fly the following rules apply to everyone.

  • You must keep your sUAS in eyesite at all times, and if necassary, use a visual observer to assist.
  • It is your responsibility to avoid other aircraft and obstacles. Stay clear of all manned aircraft operations.
  • Do not fly under the influence of drugs or alchohol.
  • Depending on the airspace you flying opperating, you may need to notify the airport and control tower if you are flying within five miles of an airport or heliport.  Often this can be accomplished by using an application such as AirMap.
  • Do not use your drone for surveillance or to photograph persons in an area where privacy is expected.
  • Do not fly over sensitive infrastructure such as prisons, federal buildings, government facilities, water treatment centers, and power stations.
  • Ensure you are opperating your drone in a safe environment and that you are compitent in the opperation of your sUAS.
  • Check local laws and ordinances before you fly over private property. 
  • Do not fly in adverse weather conditions such as high wind, rain, and low visibility.
  • Do not fly directly above unprotected persons or vulnerable property.

FedERAl DRONE Regulations in Oregon

Fly a drone for fun in the state of Oregon

Flying a drone for fun in Oregon means that you are flying as a hobbyist.  To do so legally you need to register your drone with the FAA and follow the FAA's rules for Model Aircraft.

Fly a drone for commercial purposes in the state of Oregon.

If you plan on making money from flying your drone, then you are flying from commercial purposes.  An example of this would be if you were hired to fly your drone for a real estate agent to capture some aerial imagery of a propertie that the real estate agent is trying to sell.  Another example of flying a drone for commercial purposes would be if you own a construction company and decided to start using drones to help you track progress management.

If you decide to fly your drone for commercial purposes you will need to follow the requirements of the FAA's Part 107 Small UAS Rule (Part 107), which includes passing the FAA's Aeronautical Knowledge Test to obtain a Remote Pilot Certification.

Fly a drone as a government employee in the state of Oregon

If you plan on flying your drone as a governement employee within an agency such as the fire department or police department, you may obtain a federal Certificate of Authorization (COA) or operate under the FAA's Part 107 rule. 

oregon drone laws

In addition to the nationwide drone regulations listed above there are an additional four statewide laws you will need to follow in Oregon created by the Oregon Legislative Assembly.

This law:

  • Allows a law enforcement agency to operate a drone, acquire information through the operation of a drone, or disclose information acquired through the operation of a drone, if:
    1. A warrant is issued authorizing the use of a drone; or
    2. The law enforcement agency has probable cause to believe that a person has committed a crime, is committing a crime or is about to commit a crime, and exigent circumstances exist that make it unreasonable for the law enforcement agency to obtain a warrant authorizing  use of a drone.
  • Requires a public body to register the drone with the Oregon Department of Aviation before operating in the airspace above Oregon.
  • Creates new laws and civil penalties for mounting weapons on drones.
  • Allows for landowners or those that legally occupy land, under certain conditions, to bring legal action against a public body for operating a drone under a height of 400 ft about their property.

This law establishes the registration fees for public bodies.

This drone law makes it a class A misdemeanor if the person intentionally, knowingly or recklessly operates an unmanned aircraft system that is capable of firing a bullet or projectile or otherwise operates an unmanned aircraft system in a manner that causes the system to function as a dangerous weapon.

This law:

  • Modifies the law prohibiting unmanned aircraft system weaponization from a misdemeanor to a Class C felony.
  • Bans the use of an unmanned aircraft system over private property that harrasses or annoys the owner or occupant of the property in a reckless or intentional manner.
  • Allows law enforcement to use an unmanned aircraft system to reconstruct a specific accident or crime scene. 


When flying your drone it is essential to follow Federal and State drone laws, and you should also make a habit of checking on local municipal rules and regulations before take-off.  

three pools, OR

If you need a drone for a commercial job in Oregon such as taking aerial photos for real estate or project management for construction we strongly advise that you have a Part 107 certified pilot in-house or work with a nearby professional drone company.

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