400ft Max Height
Under 100 MPH
Only line of sight
In order to safely and legally fly your drone in New Jersey, there are several laws and regulations you must be aware of before setting off with your drone.
Drone operation in New Jersey is broadly governed by the FAA, in this article we’ll look into the different laws regarding drone use.
You may be wondering if you can fly your drone in NJ in the first place, since there are some places in the US that completely ban drones. Drones are allowed in New Jersey for recreational and commercial uses!
They’re however regulated by a myriad of laws and regulations. There are three types of drone laws in New Jersey which we’ll go over in this article.
Starting with the first and general type of laws; federal drone laws.
Federal laws are laws that apply to every state in the United States, including New Jersey, and were created by the federal government.
I have covered them in-depth in my previous drone laws article, but I’ll briefly go over them here.
There are two types of drone flying: Recreational flying, which means flying for fun, as a hobby. And commercial flying, which according to the FAA is any flying that you’re compensated for (even shooting and selling stock images).
In order to fly recreationally, you’ll need to pass a simple online test called the TRUST. Beware of anyone who tries to charge you for it as the FAA requires the test to be free.
If you want to pass the test, my personal recommendation are Uavcoach, they’re an FAA approved test administrator.
You’ll also need to register your drone, which will only cost you $5. Note that once you receive your registration number you have to write it on your drone.
In order to fly commercially, i.e receive money from your drone flights, you’ll have to study for and pass the 107 test. I have done a complete guide on that test here.
There are also other conditions that you must fulfill in order to be eligible to fly your drone commercially in New Jersey. You can check them in-depth in my US drone laws article.
Below are the federal drone laws in New Jersey that you’ll have to keep in mind:
This was a general view on the federal drone laws in New Jersey. To fly safely, you’ll need more information and an in-depth view of the current drone laws landscape, check out my previous detailed article about the subject.
In addition to federal drone laws, there are state laws that apply only to the state of New Jersey, and were created by its legislature.
There is only one major state law in NJ regarding drone use. Here is the gist of it, according to the New Jersey Department of Transportation.
You can read further on it in this official source but basically, in New Jersey:
There is also a law that prohibits local governments from over-ruling the laws above, we’ll get into the local laws in the next section.
These local drone laws are laws that only apply to certain cities or regions within the state of New Jersey. They’re created and enforced by the local authorities.
I’ve found quite a few cities and towns in New Jersey that have extra drone laws, let’s go over them one by one.
You may not fly your drone within any property owned or managed by the county. According to this ordinance.
This township ordinance dictates that you may not fly your drone within any airspace below 400 feet off the ground and structures within the township.
According to this law, you may not fly your drone within any park area in the town unless it is explicitly stated that drone flight is allowed in certain parks.
You may not fly your drone in any park area unless it is clearly stated by the director of the County Parks and Recreation that a certain area is open for drone use.
This county’s ordinance prohibits flying within or over parks unless you’ve received permission.
This city’s ordinance is a little more detailed than the others. Here, you may not fly in any airspace below 400 ft:
You can read up more on that here.
Flying within 500 ft of any park here is prohibited.
Taking off from or landing on any public or government buildings here is prohibited. You should steer clear of those by at least 400 ft.
This city’s ordinance prohibits using your drone in public airspace below 400 ft. And seeing as you need to get permission from the FAA to fly over 400 ft, it’s a little complicated.
You may not fly your drone above or close to public parks here.
The laws here are simple, you just have to not use your drone on or above school grounds.
Fines are up to the enforcement division, the FAA however will rarely go for the maximum.
In the case of an accidental first-offense, the FAA will probably just require a temporary suspension of your UAS Airman certificate and remedial training.
For the more egregious offenses, such as flying in an airport vicinity, expect slightly more serious repercussions.
In conclusion, just make sure you keep the federal laws in mind as they are the most important, and keep in mind to always ask for permission before flying in public parks.
Have fun and fly safely, most of these laws are just common sense.