Delaware UAS Laws

Note on Federal vs State Laws:

Federal airspace laws take precedence over state drone laws. If a state or local law directly conflicts with FAA regulations, the state or local law is likely to be invalidated.



Unmanned aircraft system” means a powered, aerial vehicle that:

  1. Does not carry a human operator;
  2. Uses aerodynamic forces to provide vehicle lift;
  3. Can fly autonomously or be piloted remotely; and
  4. Can be expendable or recoverable.

Critical infrastructure” means petroleum refineries, petroleum storage facilities, chemical storage facilities, chemical manufacturing facilities, fuel storage facilities, electric substations, power plants, electric generation facilities, military facilities, commercial port and harbor facilities, rail yard facilities, drinking water treatment or storage facilities, correctional facilities, government buildings, and public safety buildings or facilities.


First responder” means federal, state, and local law-enforcement officers, fire, and emergency medical services personnel, hazardous materials response team members, 9-1-1 dispatchers, or any individual who is responsible for the protection and preservation of life and is directed to respond to an incident that could result in death or serious injury.

Statutes/Bills (passed):
1334 - Unlawful use of an unmanned aircraft system; unclassified misdemeanor; class B misdemeanor; class A misdemeanor

Prohibited acts. — Except as provided in this section, no person shall knowingly operate, direct, or program an unmanned aircraft system to fly:

  1. Over any sporting event, concert, automobile race, festival, or other event at which more than 1500 people are in attendance; or
  2. Over any critical infrastructure; or
  3. Over any incident where first responders are actively engaged in response or air, water, vehicular, ground or specialized transport.

Exemptions. — The prohibitions set forth in subsection (b) of this section shall not apply to:

  1. An unmanned aircraft system used for law-enforcement purposes; or
  2. An unmanned aircraft system flying over property where written permission has been granted by the property owner or occupier; or
  3. An unmanned aircraft system operated by an institution of higher education for educational purposes in compliance with Federal Aviation Administration regulations; or
  4. An unmanned aircraft system that is being used for a commercial or other purpose if the operator is authorized by the Federal Aviation Administration.


Penalties. — Unlawful use of an unmanned aircraft system is an unclassified misdemeanor for a first offense and a class B misdemeanor for a second or subsequent offense, except that in any case where physical injury to a person or damage to property occurs as a result of a violation of this section unlawful use of an unmanned aircraft system is a class A misdemeanor.


9202 - Regulations Governing Natural Areas and Nature Preserves


No person shall voluntarily bring, land or cause to descend or alight on or upon any lands or waters administered by the Division any aircraft, flying machine, balloon, parachute, drones or other apparatus for aviation except with the prior consent of the Director. “Voluntarily” shall mean for purposes of this paragraph anything other than a forced or emergency landing.


This bill prohibits the use of unmanned aircraft systems (drones) to introduce contraband into detention facilities. This bill makes it a class F felony to deliver or attempt to deliver contraband by use of a drone.