Administrative policy regarding unmanned aircraft systems | Kent State University

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Administrative policy regarding unmanned aircraft systems

  1. Purpose. This policy supports the safety and privacy of the university community by establishing restrictions and enabling the enforcement of applicable rules and regulations controlling the use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), popularly referred to as drones, and model aircraft.  It applies to all university employees and students, and to third parties operating on university grounds.
  2. Definitions. For the purposes of this policy, the following definitions will apply:
    1. Model aircraft. The term “model aircraft” means an unmanned aircraft that is:
      1. capable of sustained flight in the atmosphere;
      2. flown within visual line of sight of the person operating the aircraft; and
      3. flown for hobby or recreational purposes.
    2. Operator. The term “operator” means the person who is controlling, maneuvering, or commanding the aircraft.
    3. Small unmanned aerial vehicle. The term “small unmanned aerial vehicle” means an unmanned aerial vehicle weighing less than fifty-five pounds.
    4. Unmanned aerial vehicle. The term “unmanned aerial vehicle” means an aircraft that is operated without the possibility of direct human intervention from within or on the aircraft.
    5. Unmanned aircraft system (UAS). The term “unmanned aircraft system” means an unmanned aerial vehicle and associated elements (including communication links and the components that control the unmanned aerial vehicle) that are required for the pilot in command to operate safely and efficiently in the national airspace system.
  3. Scope. This policy applies to any UAS or model aircraft operated by:
    1. University employees and students operating in any location as part of their university employment, course instruction, or other official university activities;
    2. Any person or entity operating on or above university property, whether owned or leased.
    3. Any university department wishing to rent, lease, or purchase a UAS for university business or educational purposes, or is contracting with a third party to provide such services. 
  4. Operating requirements.
    1. All operation of UAS or model aircraft by university community members, or by third parties on or above university property, must comply with FAA regulations and local, state, and federal laws regarding use of UAS. Any operation or use that violates such regulations or laws is prohibited.  It is the responsibility of the operator to adhere to all relevant laws and regulations, including relevant university polices and procedures.
      1. All operators of UAS, also commonly referred to as the pilot in control or “PIC,” must hold valid, unexpired registration with the FAA, unless otherwise exempt from such registration.
      2. PIC shall provide any and all notifications as required by FAA regulations and/or university policies and procedures prior to the commencement of flight operations. Such notification may including, but are not limited to:
        1. Notification as may be required by the FAA to all airports within a 5-mile radius of the intended area of operation; and
        2. Notification to the department of public safety prior to flight operations on the Kent campus when an exception is granted in accordance with paragraph (F) of this rule.
    2. Aircraft may not exceed the size and weight specifications established by the University.
    3. UAS operations on or above university property are only permitted in areas designated and approved by the office of risk management and compliance, unless an exception is granted in accordance with paragraph (F) of this rule. Such designated areas shall be posted in a publicly assessable manner.
    4. All operators of UAS must minimize risks to other aircraft and people and property on the ground. If such risks cannot be effectively minimized, then any such operation under this policy is prohibited.
      1. All operators must stay within a line of sight of the UAS.
      2. The UAS must remain at least fifty feet away from any student walkway or path.
      3. The UAS must remain at least two hundred feet from any building or structure on university property.
      4. The UAS must remain at least one hundred feet away from parking lots or roadways.
      5. All operators are prohibited from any UAS operations on or above Kent state university airport property and the Dix stadium sports complex.
    5. UAS or model aircraft shall not be used to monitor or record sensitive institutional or personal information. 
    6. UAS and model aircraft shall not be used to monitor or record an area where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy in accordance with accepted social norms.
  5. Compliance and enforcement. The office of risk management and compliance is responsible for the administration of this policy, in coordination with other university departments and resources as necessary. The department of public safety is responsible for enforcement of this policy to the extent that such enforcement is related to safety and security.
    1. Persons operating UAS or model aircraft on campus in violation of this policy are trespassers and may be subject to administrative or legal action including, but not limited to, being removed from campus and receiving a written directive to remain off campus.
    2. Contractors and vendors shall comply with this policy and associated procedures. The contracting university department shall be responsible for ensuring contractors and vendors are aware of this compliance obligation.
    3. Student violations may be addressed in accordance with the student code of conduct provided for in rules 3342-4-02 and 3342-4-02.1 of the Administrative Code, as well as other applicable policies, and may include sanctions up to and including suspension or dismissal.
    4. Employee violations may be resolved in accordance with university policies, including sanctions up to and including termination.
    5. Violators of local, state, and federal laws and regulations may be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agencies.
  6. Implementation. The senior vice president for finance and administration, or designee, is responsible for the adoption of written procedures necessary for the effective administration and implementation of UAS activities at Kent state university. Any exception to this rule or any written procedures regarding UAS must be approved by the senior vice president for finance and administration.

For related information, go to: https://www.kent.edu/einside/news/safe-drone-use-campus

Policy Effective Date: 
May. 01, 2016