While members of the South Carolina Air National Guard (SCANG) conduct search and rescue missions and also assess damage in flooded areas left behind by now-former Tropical Storm Florence, officers are reminding citizens to respect their airspace.
“We’re going to be doing extensive flights in search-and-rescue efforts, so we’re looking for everybody who operates a drone or anybody who does general aviation to follow the FAA guidelines and stay well clear of any aircraft that are responding to the emergency,” SCANG Air Operations Branch Director Maj. Justin Puro said.
“They can create problems for the aircraft that are trying to do damage assessment flights in a specific flight plan,” he said.
Although most of the damage and flooding is in the Grand Strand and Pee Dee areas, Maj. Puro said the order is statewide.
“It’s really just following the FAA guidelines and staying well clear of responding aircraft. We’re concerned as the weather gets better people are going to be flying their drones or their general aviation aircraft to try to get a better look,” he said.