Flying in Hampton Roads is not so easy

As I have mentioned before, because of the local airports and military bases, around 60 percent of Hampton Roads is restricted..

Flying in Hampton Roads is not so easy
Tuesday December 15th 2020 - 10:17 AM EST

By: Air Aspects

As I have mentioned before, because of the local airports and military bases, around 60 percent of Hampton Roads is restricted airspace, and so legally you cannot just "take off and get photos".

For example, Oceana’s airspace covers most of Virginia Beach, from the oceanfront to almost Town Center, and a lot of that area is completely restricted (the blocks with ’0’ in them), so you’re not even allowed to take the drone up 5 ft without getting permissions.

Where Oceana’s airspace ends, Norfolk International Airport’s airspace begins, covering most of Norfolk from Ocean View down to Waterside.  Again, several parts of that area are ’zero blocks’, meaning you cannot legally take off at all without jumping through a few hoops.

After that, with Naval Station Norfolk, Langley, Fort Eustis and Newport News/Williamsburg Airport, restricted airspace covers the Peninsula up to around Yorktown.

When flying in an FAA controlled airspace, such as Norfolk International Airport, permissions can sometimes be obtained through the LAANC - Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability - system. If you want to fly higher than that location block allows, you have to apply a few days out.

When flying in the military airspaces, advance permission from the FAA and the military base is required to be able to do the shoot legally and safely. This involves filling in a form on the FAA drone website and waiting for permission.

Some of this preparation can take a few days, depending on the exact location, time of day of the shoot, and length of the job.

This is why professional drone pilots like me often need at least a week’s notice when being asked to take aerial photos, even for a small real estate shoot.

Having such notice gives us time to get our ducks in a row, and gives time to plan the shoot for a nice day, so the photos turn out their best.  Also, this planning enables the task to be carried out legally and avoid possible fines, not just for the pilot but also for the person hiring them.

Several things have to be considered when you’re using aerial photos and video to promote yourself. This is where an experienced, licensed and insured photographer can really make you stand out from the crowd.

Aerial Photography Projects

Manassas Aerial photos for Contractors yard
Friday July 23rd 2021

Princess Anne Virginia Beach School aerial photos
Friday July 16th 2021

Southern Chesapeake House Aerials
Friday July 09th 2021

Yorktown Aerial photos for Contractors yard
Friday July 02nd 2021

Aerial photo shoot for Suffolk waterfront home
Friday June 25th 2021

Suffolk Aerial Videos for EcoMisters
Friday June 18th 2021

Windsor Aerial Photos for a Solar Company
Friday June 04th 2021

Smithfield Aerial Mapping Project
Friday May 28th 2021

Recent Instagram Posts by

Air Aspects

Contact Us

If you would like more information, please feel free to contact us by either phone or email.

+1 (757) 549-4764
133 Kempsville Road
Chesapeake, Virginia 23320

Business Hours: Mon - Fri 8.30am - 5.30pm
Because of location shooting and COVID-19 measures, we cannot accept walk-ins.
Please call for an aerial photography appointment