If you happen to own your own drone to take photos of other Floridians on their property, you better stop it soon — unless you want to get sued.
That’s because on Thursday, SB 766 was sent to Gov. Rick Scott’s desk. The bill states that drones cannot be used to photograph or record images of people or their property from the air. The restrictions would also apply to state and local governments.
The legislation was sponsored in the Senate by Port Orange Republican Dorothy Hukill. It allows victims of drone surveillance to sue for damages and covers all kinds of remotely controlled or automated unmanned aircraft, whether they are the size of a mosquito or a small airplane. The measure includes several exceptions where drones could still be used, including utility companies and property appraisers.
In 2013, Florida became one of the first states in the country to pass legislation limiting the use of drones by law enforcement. That law only allows law enforcement agencies to use drones to collect “evidence or information” if they have a warrant, with just a few exceptions.
At least 13 states already have enacted laws addressing drones, and another 10 are considering legislation this year.
Scott will have 15 days – running until May 22 — to act on the bill.