Executive Memorandum No. 31
University of Nebraska Policy on Unmanned Aircraft Systems
Policy Purpose, Goals, Scope, and Implementation
- Policy Purpose: Rapid advances in technology provide opportunities for the use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), also called unmanned aerial vehicles or "drones," as a tool for education, research, and outreach. All aircraft operating in the National Airspace System must follow Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rules and regulations. The purpose of this policy is to provide clarity and a framework for UAS operations at the University of Nebraska ("University").
- Policy Goals: The goals of this policy are to support the use of UAS in education, research, and outreach within current laws and rules; protect the safety of the University community; and ensure appropriate oversight for risk management of UAS operations at the University.
- Policy Scope: This policy applies to the following
- University faculty, staff, students, and individuals operating UAS as part of University activities at any location;
- Individuals operating UAS purchased with funding through the University;
- Indiviudals hired to perform services involving operation of UAS for the University;
- Individuals operating UAS for hobby or recreation on or above University property; and
- Individuals operating UAS for commercial/business use and/or non-University purposes on or above University property
- Policy Implementation: University Chancellors will work with personnel in Academic Affairs; Business and Finance; Research; Risk Management; Police, Safety, or Security; and other areas to develop procedures to implement this policy, including additional restrictions, for UAS operations on or above University owned or controlled property.
Requirements for UAS Operations
- University Faculty, Staff. Students, and Individuals Operating UA as Part of University Activities or Purchased with University Funds: Prior to operating UAS or seeking any required FAA authorization to operate UAS as part of University activities at any location, the principal investigator/project leader must complete and submit required information to the designated University campus authority and receive approval for each project. Operators must also follow the general requirements set forth in this section.
- Individuals Conducting Services Involving the Operation of UA for the University or Operating UAS for Commercial/Business Use and/or Non-University Purposes on or above University Property: Individuals conducting services involving the operation of UAS for the University or operating UAS for commercial/business use and/or non-University purposes on or above University property must complete and submit required information to the designated University campus authority and receive approval prior to such proposed UAS operations. Prior to these operations, the individuals must also provide credentials and a certificate of insurance that shows adequate UAS liability insurance coverage and names the Board of Regents of the University as an additional insured. Additionally, operators must follow the general requirements set forth in this section.
- General Requirements for UAS Operations:
- UAS operators must follow federal and state laws, FAA rules and regulations, and University policies.
- If the FAA requires authorization to operate UAS, all operators must obtain the applicable FAA authorization through an appropriate FAA designated method, such as a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA), Section 333 Exemption, or Special Airworthiness Certificate (SAC). The operator must provide evidence of such authorization to the designated University campus authority.
- UAS operations outside the United States as part of University activities require export controls review.
- If the UAS is involved in an accident causing injury to a person or property, the operator must report the accident immediately, but no more than two University business days, to the designated University campus authority.
Operating UAS for Hobby or Recreation at the University
Chancellors will work with personnel in Academic Affairs; Business and Finance; Research; Risk Management; Police, Safety, or Security; and other areas to develop policies, implementation procedures, and required documentation, if any, related to UAS operations for hobby or recreational purposes on or above campus and other property owned or controlled by the University.
Prohibited UAS Operations
UAS operations as part of University activities without submission of the required information and approval by the designated University campus authority are prohibited.
- UAS outdoor or indoor operations on or above the University that create undue hazard to the university community or the public are prohibited.
- UAS operations on or above the University that monitor or record sensitive institutional or personal information are prohibited. Prohibited areas include, but are not limited to an individual's workspace or computer; restrooms; changing, dressing, or locker rooms; residential rooms, hallways, or lounges; health treatment rooms; or daycare facilities.
- UAS operations on or above the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) are prohibited due to helipad, unless granted an exception by the FAA.
- UAS operations above or in proximity of University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Memorial Stadium on a game day are prohibited under FAA regulation (https: //www.faa.gov/uas/fag/#) and UNL policy (https: //bf.un1.edu/policies/football-game-day-stadium-halo-policy) unless granted an exception by the UNL Chancellor and an FAA airspace waiver.
Penalties for Violation of Policy
Any violations of University policies or student codes of conduct by an individual will be administered in accordance with applicable University policies and procedures. Individuals who violate this policy may be subject to civil or criminal penalties and the seizure of UAS by campus police or security. Fines, damages, and claims against individuals who violate this policy may be the responsibility of that individual.
Dated this 11 day of October, 2016
April 22, 2016
Revised October 4, 2016