Drone activity noted on sectional charts

WHAT. NO PILOT IN THE COCKPIT? Drone activity noted on sectional charts with a small airplane symbol with the letters “UA”.

“Manned and unmanned aircraft not authorized in the same traffic pattern. Arriving manned air­craft may follow unmanned aircraft on final.”

AREAS WITH A PREPONDERANCE of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) activity are typically noted on sectional charts with a small airplane symbol, similar to that used for glider operating areas but with the letters “UA” instead of “G.” Expect UAS activity in nearby restricted or other special-use airspace and mili­tary installations.

Be alert if you spot the symbol near your planned route, and pay close attention to notams: If a UAS TFR is issued, mark the location and boundaries on your chart. If there’s no TFR and operations are con­ducted outside of controlled airspace, note times and altitudes. In addition, the airport remarks for joint civil/ military airports may address UAS flight activity. For example, Sierra Vista Municipal-Libby AAF (KFHU) notes, “Manned and unmanned aircraft not authorized in the same traffic pattern. Arriving manned air­craft may follow unmanned aircraft on final.”

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