University of Arkansas: Drones Banned for Security Reasons

The university’s new policy is an attempt to protect student privacy, according to officials.

The University of Arkansas announced this week that it will no longer allow drones to fly over campus grounds.

The university’s new policy will ban all unmanned aircraft systems or remote controlled model aircraft unless the flight is specifically approved by the provost and vice provost for research and economic development, ars technica reports.

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For individuals who want to fly a drone over an athletic venue, then that flight has to be approved by the vice chancellor and director of athletics.

In either case, the drone operator would have to show that they are in compliance with FAA requirements, as well as in compliance with any federal or state laws that may pertain to drone flight, according to ars technica.

The move is an attempt to maintain campus security while protecting student privacy, according to Steve Gahagans, the school’s police director.

University officials are asking anyone who sees a drone over campus to report it to the police. Violators will be subject to criminal trespass warnings and possible arrest.

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Colleges have considered restricting drone use after several incidents where students’ privacy and safety has come into question, perhaps most notably when a student flew a drone over a packed football stadium at the University of Texas last year.

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