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Colorado Ski Town Could Become a No-Fly Zone for Drones

The Vail town council is considering rules to ban drones from town property

All of town property in Vail could become a no-fly zone for drone hobbyists, according to the Vail Daily. Commercial and private drone use is already banned on the mountain — though there are of course exceptions for events like the GoPro Mountain Games — and that would extend to town in new rules that are supposed to mirror the Federal Aviation Administration's guidelines. It can already be considered trespassing to fly a drone into your neighbor's yard, so without town-owned public places like parks as an option, drone flight in Vail could become limited to right above your own house.

In addition to whether allowing drones above the dog park might lead to "GoPro footage from inside a dog," city council members also wondered about scenarios where a drone could be used for deadly retribution.

Drones can weigh upwards of 20 pounds — a hefty weight to come crashing down. And in Vail, where the firing a gun is illegal, that weight could be used to defend one's property under state law.

"It’s illegal to discharge a firearm in Vail, but could we have ‘make my day’ situations with drones?" Vail council member Greg Moffet said, according to the Vail Daily.

But for uses of drones that are squarely under warranty, the flight paths are getting fewer. A drone ban over town property is likely, the Vail Daily writes, but exceptions for events like weddings may be made. Elsewhere in ski country, drones are approved on specific runs at ski areas in partnership with the drone filming company, Cape Productions.