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article imageGolden Gate Bridge declares itself a 'no-drone zone'

By Nathan Salant     Dec 28, 2015 in Travel
San Francisco - Just in case you were considering flying that new aerial drone you got for Christmas off the Golden Gate Bridge, there's a new rule you probably should know about.
You can't.
Signs were installed on and around the iconic bridge last week advising potential amateur pilots and other visitors that there are no drones allowed, according to KCBS, the local CBS radio network station.
Officials with the Golden Gate Bridge District, the public entity that owns and operates the bridge, said unmanned drones are not allowed because they pose safety and security risks to people on the bridge.
“Whether due to operator error or technical problems, drones can and do fail,” district officials said in a written statement released last week.
“When they drop from the sky, they pose great risk of causing traffic, bicycle and pedestrian accidents, especially given the crowded conditions on the bridge,” the statement said.
The ban extends to areas near the bridge and the acreage around it, which extends to National Park Service property north and south of the famous span.
District officials said drones discovered flying near the bridge would be tracked and confiscated, and operators would be tracked down and prosecuted, CBS radio said.
The district's reminder was scheduled to coincide with new Federal Aviation Administration rules taking effect that require registration for all small unmanned aircraft weighing between 0.55 and 55 pounds before they can be flown outdoors.
“For decades, the only people who had access to our airspace were highly trained pilots who came from a culture where safety was deeply embedded,” FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said in a statement.
“Now, thousands upon thousands of brand new users are starting to fly, and the reality is that most have very limited or no aviation experience,” he said
Huerta also said the new registration requirements offered more opportunities for amateur pilots to learn aviation safety rules, Huerta said.
Registration costs $5 and can be done online at
People who previously bought unmanned aircraft but did not register them have until Feb. 19 to make everything legal, CBS said.
Just under 1 million vehicles cross the Golden Gate Bridge each week, with most paying a $7.25 cash fare.
The bridge is owned and operated by a special district of the State of California that uses revenue from cash fares to pay for bridge maintenance and to operate bus and ferry systems linking Marin County and points north with San Francisco and the East Bay area.
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