Drones and UAVs

The Newport Beach Police Department routinely receives questions regarding the use of drones (also known as unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs) within the city. This page is provided as a resource to anyone looking for additional information on the regulations and registration of these devices.

Because nearly all of the City of Newport Beach is geographically located within John Wayne Airport air space, recreational and commercial flights of all drones need to be authorized. Operators must contact the John Wayne Airport tower (714-668-0141) and receive permission prior to flying within the airport's airspace. Failure to do so is a violation of FAA regulations.

Additional information and resources can be found using the links below:

  • The Know Before You Fly organization provides information for recreational and business users of drones.
  • The FAA's Model Aircraft page provides guidelines for hobby and recreational use of model aircrafts, including drones.
  • Effective 12/21/2015, anyone who owns a small unmanned aircraft (including a drone) must register with the Federal Aviation Administration's Unmanned Aircraft System registry before they fly outdoors.  For more details, and to register, see the FAA's Unmanned Aircraft System Registration page.

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