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Drone Trespassing lawsuit in WA  

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makerofmaps
(@makerofmaps)
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December 31, 2018 6:49 am  

This should be interesting.

D’Amico files lawsuits alleging drone overflights and ‘aerial trespass’ at planned shooting facility

“On Dec. 10, an anti-harassment order was filed against a Tarboo Ridge Coalition board member, who we have information is responsible for sending drones onto our property,” Overstreet said. “On Dec. 17, another case was filed, this one against the Tarboo Ridge Coalition (TRC) for the tort of aerial trespass.

“There is no case in the state of Washington on aerial trespass,” Overstreet said, adding that “this case will make new law.”

This topic was modified 2 weeks ago by Wendell

Measure it with a micrometer, mark it with chalk, and cut it with an ax.


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StLSurveyor
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December 31, 2018 8:50 am  

I wonder how using a drone to capture aerial images (lines of possession) for a boundary retracement would be treated? If a Land Surveyor is operating the drone and using the data to determine possession lines would the use of a drone be exempt from aerial trespass?

 

Professional Surveyor - MO, AR, KS, KY
sUAS Certified Pilot


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makerofmaps
(@makerofmaps)
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January 3, 2019 9:40 am  

Found the sites facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/Fort-Discovery-Inc-310175385699157/ Got a post about a bird of prey taking down drones.

Measure it with a micrometer, mark it with chalk, and cut it with an ax.


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WA-ID Surveyor
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January 3, 2019 9:54 am  

While certainly there is a right to privacy there is no restriction or law against flying in the airspace above someones property.  This will be an interesting case to watch.


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Dave Karoly
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January 3, 2019 9:56 am  

The comment thread is interesting.

The FAA regulates airspace which is in the public domain but how far down does airspace go?

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? -1 Corinthians 15:55


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Daniel Ralph
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January 3, 2019 10:58 am  

The property owned by Fort Discovery Corp. near Lake Tarboo is completely surrounded by property owned by Pope Resources. 

From the Pope Resources web site:

NO DRONE ZONE - Thursday, February 22, 2018
Our timberlands are a "no drone zone" in order to prevent collisions with private planes and helicopters used in the management of our timberlands, to protect human health and safety, to reduce the risk of wildfires, and to prevent damage to trees, towers and other property. The use of drones or other unmanned aircraft systems ("UASs") on or above any portion of our timberlands is strictly prohibited without express written authorization given by one of our tree farm managers. In addition, it is illegal to fly a UAS in or around a wildfire firefighting operation.

NO TARGET SHOOTING - Tuesday, August 08, 2017
No target shooting is allowed on any Olympic Resource Management property.

That said, I note what appears to be a power transmission line near the western boundary 

 

Dan Moehrke, PLS


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Beau_Immel
(@beau_immel)
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January 4, 2019 7:56 am  

I did not know that I could make up a reason to have a "no drone zone" around my house. 

On the matter of airspace trespass I went to Jeff Lucas seminar a couple years ago and he said with the part 107 you don't own the "air above the blades of grass on your lawn".  That quote has stuck with me. He also called it a huge land grab by the government that had gone largely unnoticed. 

The privacy laws are another matter. 


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JaRo
 JaRo
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January 5, 2019 8:35 am  

There was a lawsuit years ago between a Telecommunications company and a Power Plant. Walt Robillard was involved and discussed it at a seminar roughly 20 years ago. The power company built a cooling tower high enough that it blocked a microwave link of the phone company.

The final judgement was that power company owned the the ground and the airspace above the ground as high as they could control it. That is from memory and long before drones. I haven't been able to find anything on it since.

The discussion at the time seemed to agree that if you had a 20 foot tree, you owned 20 foot of air space, 80 foot tree = 80 foot of air space.

East Texas, Like a State of it's own, It's a State of Mind.


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thebionicman
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January 5, 2019 9:32 am  

The FAA has control over 'navigable' airspace. Think commerce clause


. Unlike waters there is little guidance in law to develop a practical definition. Despite the willingness of hucksters to make absolute declarations, the courts have given no such guidance at the appellate level.

What people really need to be researching right now is state statutes and local ordinances. That is where the action is today. Some see it as a grab of my rights, others as salvation from 'them', whoever them is..

As Surveyors we should also understand the difference between ownership and regulatory authority. Not the ssme thing. The policies being set now will impact us. We need to take part in the process, and that starts with gaining an understanding of where we are now.

CFedS, PLS ID-OR-WA-UT-NV


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ansan12001
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January 11, 2019 10:36 pm  

We here in California have pretty explict laws on a land surveyors rights and responsibilities concerning encroachment. I always advise for surveyors to leave the CLS associations'  brochure of information at the property in question.  

California law allows for surveyors to legally enter unto private property for surveying purposes.  At times we get asked about the drone flights and simply offer the person asking to review the data from the drone before we leave the site.  They never can zoom in close enough to see small detail, however when I post process in the office I can see survey markings down to under a inch.

In southern California, you will also come across alot of small marijuana farms, which in certain conditions is totally legal now.  If it doesn't harm anyone I don't report it since I only came across the plants as a result of my survey work.  I treat most situations in a similar fashion.


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Jered McGrath PLS
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January 14, 2019 9:17 am  

I have been waiting to see how airspace laws will ultimately be litigated from the more frequent use of drones. Im not aware of many cases that have been taken all the way through the court system to set a precedent but I am aware of this older precedent case decided by SCOTUS in 1946.  Many who have gotten into airspace may be aware of this case.    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Causby

“It is the mark of an educated man to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it”. Paraphrased by Others.
Jered McGrath PLS (OR, WA, CA) http://www.linkedin.com/in/jeredmcgrathpls


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