Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) or Drone Operations
Individuals or entities that transport dangerous goods, also known as hazardous materials, via UAS must meet the same regulatory requirements of manned aircraft. A brief description of applicable regulations as they apply to UAS is listed below:
- 14 CFR Part 107, known as the Small UAS Rule, allows many types of UAS operations. Package delivery operations may be permitted under specific conditions. However, Part 107 prohibits the carriage/transportation of dangerous goods at all times and is not subject to waiver.
- 14 CFR Part 135 is the only regulatory path for UAS to carry the property of another for compensation beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS). The 14 CFR Part 135 Air Carrier and Operator Certification Process requires the development of a dangerous goods training program and manual. During this process, the FAA works collaboratively with applicants to ensure they meet all regulatory and safety requirements. These requirements are the same as what is expected for traditional, crewed Part 135 on-demand certificate holders.
- 14 CFR Part 137 applies to drones used in agricultural operations or other special aircraft operations where dangerous goods are dispensed in flight. To obtain authorization to operate under this regulation, contact your local Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) to start the certification process. They will work with the Office of Hazardous Materials Safety (AXH) as needed.
We support the FAA’s UAS Integration Pilot Program (IPP) and the FAA's BEYOND program by working with industry, state, local, and tribal governments to help realize the benefits of drones while informing the development of a more mature drone regulatory framework.
For questions about Dangerous Goods involving a UAS, please contact the FAA Office of Hazardous Materials Safety via e-mail at email@example.com or via voice message at 405-954-0088. Please allow 1–2 business days for answers to questions.
When you take your drone with you onboard passenger aircraft – whether you use drones for recreation, commercial activities, or as a public aircraft operator – your drone might be a dangerous good! Lithium batteries, fuel cells, and components of certain parachute systems can all be classified as dangerous goods.
Download a copy of our Drone/UAS Passenger Brochure – Your Drone Might Be a Dangerous Good (PDF). Also, see FAA's PackSafe page to make sure you travel safely with your UAS.