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Wait 30 Hours to Fly Your Drone?

Friday, October 12, 2018 09:32

Do you realize that over-the-counter medications like some cold medications and antihistamines may impair your piloting of a drone? They have powerful sedating agents. The FAA suggests waiting 30 hours before you can pilot your drone?

This Fact Sheet  from the FAA states: "If you have to take a disqualifying or impairing medicine, how long should you wait before resuming flying? Every medicine is different, but a good rule of thumb is 5 times the half life of the medication. The easy way to determine this is through the dosing interval. If a medication says to take it 4 times per day, the dosing interval would be 6 hours. Therefore the wait time after the last dose would be 30 hours (6 hours x 5 = 30 hours). Other medications may have longer or shorter intervals."  Here is another enlightening publication from the FAA... Medications and Flying

As a reminder, 14 C.F.R. § 107.27 states: "A person manipulating the flight controls of a small unmanned aircraft system or acting as a remote pilot in command or visual observer must comply with the provisions of §§91.17 and 91.19 of this chapter." 14.C.F.R. § 91.17(a)(3) states: "(a) No person may act or attempt to act as a crewmember of a civil aircraft—While using any drug that affects the person's faculties in any way contrary to safety." 

Using the FAA-recommended IMSAFE checklist (Risk Management Handbook FAA-H-8093-2, Chapter 3) before each mission is a good way to help ensure you are flying safely.