Are you excited to go to SXSW? Are you ready for that blazing fast Google Fiber? Can’t wait to take your fancy drone out to shoot great footage from the skies? Well, looks like you will have to hold off on that air footage. For now you will have to keep your drones at home. Austin bans drones at South by Southwest. The city’s police chief has mandated no one can fly drones in Austin. If you do, expect to be prosecuted. A city ordinance was written to restrict the use of full-scale planes over Austin, not drones. However, Austin police chief Art Acevedo is using it as justification for banning drones anyway.
“Believe me, in the state of Texas folks don’t like drones. So if you operate one, we will get a call, you will be subject to confiscation or arrest.” ~Austin police chief Art Acevedo
The Superbowl had a similar band on drones. I look for this to be the standard going forward for large events. Just last month the FAA set new guidelines that seek to restrict the commercial use of drones that weigh less than 55 pounds. Drones that fall under that prerequisite would not be able to fly higher than 500 feet and can’t go faster than 100 miles an hour.
The gathering of geeks, music heads, and filmmakers would be the perfect place to see what creative people can do with drones. I, for one, expect to see many rebels flying their drones despite the ban.