Restricted or Special Use Airspace

Restricted or "special use" airspace is for certain areas where drones and other aircraft are not permitted to fly without special permission, or where limitations must be imposed for any number of reasons. Drone pilots should be familiar with:

Prohibited areas

Airspace where aircraft flight, including drones, is prohibited. The dimensions of each prohibited area are defined in both area and altitude.

Restricted Areas

Restricted areas are where operations are hazardous to you and your drone flying in the vicinity. Restricted areas denote the existence of unusual hazards that are often not immediately visible (for example, artillery firing, aerial gunnery, or guided missiles).

Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs)

Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) define a certain area of airspace where air travel is limited because of:

  • Temporary hazardous conditions, such as a wildfire, hurricane, or chemical spill.
  • A security-related event, such as the United Nations General Assembly.
  • Other special situations, like VIP movement.

The text of the actual TFR contains the details about the restriction, including the size, altitude, and time period of the TFR, and what types of operations are restricted and permitted.

The "Map Airports" tab on the TFR website can help narrow down the relevant active TFRs in a specific area. For help in searching the site, review the TFR website help section.

Last updated: Friday, February 8, 2019