As technology for drones (UAEs or unmanned aerial vehicles) has advanced, so have the laws governing their use. More and more people are purchasing and using drones in Texas. It is necessary to have drone laws to protect the general public from invasions of privacy and potential harm and injury. 

Commercial flyers and hobbyists have a duty to understand the laws and regulations governing drone use in the state.

Texas Drone Laws and Your Rights

Chapter 423 of the Texas Government Code focuses on drones that take video, pictures, or recordings. Unless the operator falls under one of the exceptions to the law, it is illegal for them to use a drone to take pictures or videos of private individuals or property. Violators can be charged with a crime.

Drone operators are also prohibited from using drones to drive, hunt, capture, count, take, or photograph wildlife in Texas unless they have a permit issued by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department

It is also a violation of federal law to use an aircraft for these activities without the appropriate permit issued by a state. The federal guidelines specify that states cannot issue permits for sport hunting. Failure to follow the rules is a misdemeanor and a violation of the Federal Airborne Hunting Act.

Texas drone laws also prohibit using drones over certain areas, including but not limited to:

  • Critical infrastructure facilities
  • Correctional or detention facilities
  • Sports venues, except under certain exceptions

There are also rules for drone use by law enforcement agencies and other government entities. Local governments within Texas have also enacted drone laws that apply within their jurisdictions. Operators must also be aware of the No Fly Zones and No Drone Zones in Texas.

In addition to Texas drone laws, operating a drone is also governed by federal drone laws. As a result, there are at least two sets of laws that drone operators must abide by.

What Causes Drone Accidents in Houston, TX?

In addition to criminal charges for violating Texas drone laws, an individual can be sued in civil court if their drone causes an injury or accident. Drone accidents in Texas occur because of:

  • Drones being used for unauthorized purposes
  • Inexperienced drone operators
  • Drones colliding with each other or other objects
  • Failing to follow the regulations and rules for safely operating drones
  • Drones that have a defective design or are defective because of a manufacturing error
  • Flying drones in poor weather conditions
  • Operating a drone under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
  • Software malfunctions

If a drone injured you, one or more parties could be liable for your injuries. However, you have the burden of proving negligence or another cause of action for holding the parties financially liable for damages. A Houston drone lawyer is the best person to speak with about your rights to file a drone injury claim in Texas.

Claims for Drone Accidents and Injuries in Houston, TX

Drone accidents can cause severe injuries. Examples of injuries caused by drone accidents include:

If you sustain a drone injury, seek medical treatment for your injuries immediately. Then, talk with a Houston drone injury lawyer about filing a claim for damages. Under Texas tort laws, you could receive compensation for your economic and non-economic damages, including:

Your time to file a drone injury claim is limited by the Texas statute of limitations. The statute of limitations for most personal injury claims is two years from the injury date. However, there could be exceptions to the rule.

Contact the Houston Personal Injury Lawyers at Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers For Help

Texas drone laws are complicated. The laws also change and evolve as the use of drones becomes more common. If you are unsure whether you have a claim for a drone accident, schedule a free consultation with an attorney. A defective drone or negligent operator could be responsible for your injuries and damages.

For more information, contact the Houston personal injury law firm of Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers by calling (713) 500-5000.

Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – Houston
3120 Southwest Freeway, Suite 350
Houston, TX 77098

Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – East Fwy
11811 East Fwy, Suite 630-06
Houston, TX 77029

Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – South Loop
2600 S Loop W, Suite 293
Houston, TX 77054

Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – Katy Freeway
11511 Katy Fwy Suite 515
Houston, TX 77079