What about drone flying on New Year’s Eve? What is allowed? What is prohibited? We’ll tell you so you’re ready for the turn of the year from 2023 to 2024.
Flying drones on New Year’s Eve
It’s well known that people leave the old year behind with a bang and enter the new year with wild fireworks and an alcoholic drink or two. Photo and video recordings of the colourful play of lights in the sky are particularly popular here. With the ever-growing number of drones in the private sphere, you might get the idea of capturing the New Year’s Eve spectacle with your drone. What looks so fascinating from the ground must be even more impressive from the air.
But are you allowed to fly your drone on New Year’s Eve at all? What are the regulations in Germany, Austria and the EU?
No general ban on flying drones on New Year’s Eve
There is no general ban on flying drones on New Year’s Eve in Germany. The EU Drone Regulation also allows night flights by drones. This means that, in principle, nothing stands in the way of a drone flight on New Year’s Eve.
Everyone should be aware that flying drones under the influence of alcohol is prohibited. This is stipulated in LuftVO §4 Physical and mental impairments. It specifically states:
Any person who, as a result of mental or physical impairment, is restricted in the performance of his duties as a pilot of an aircraft or otherwise as a member of the crew shall not operate an aircraft or act as another crew member. This is without prejudice to the prohibition in Annex SERA.2020 of Implementing Regulation (EU) No 923/2012.
Even if alcohol is not explicitly mentioned here, it should be clear to everyone that alcohol consumption naturally leads to the mental and physical impairments mentioned. So: don’t drink and drone!
Further regulations for drone flights on New Year’s Eve
Of course, all other regulations for drone flights also apply on New Year’s Eve. You can read about these in our guidebook Where am I allowed to fly with drones?
Important key points here are:
- Overflights of people are not permitted
- Flights in residential areas are permitted or not, depending on the category in which you are flying (see EU Drone Regulation)
- If you intend to fly over, take off or land on someone else’s property, you need a declaration of consent from the property owner
- depending on the flying area, there are further restrictions and distances to be observed(Where am I allowed to fly with my drone?)
Danger from fireworks
Irrespective of all regulations, you should also be aware of the danger posed by fireworks. A drone is quickly hit by a rocket or firework. This can not only damage the drone itself, but can also endanger people or property such as cars etc. through a crash. We therefore appeal to common sense at this point to refrain from unauthorised flights on New Year’s Eve!
In general, flying drones on New Year’s Eve is not prohibited. However, strictly adhere to the applicable regulations regarding the general rules for drone flights in Germany, Austria and the EU. This way you will not endanger yourself or others and you will also avoid legal problems.