Drone pilots in New Jersey may want to heed some advice — don’t drink and drone. There could be serious legal consequences if authorities discover that you have been operating your drone while drunk including arrest, fines and possible jail time.

Former governor Christie recently signed into law a bill that bans the piloting of drones while intoxicated by alcohol, drugs and/or hallucinogens. The regulation requires drone pilots to register less than a .08 percent alcohol content in order to legally operate their drones. In addition to the ban on drunk droning, the new law also prevents people from flying their drones around prisons, pursuing or harassing wildlife and interfering with first responders. Violators of the drone laws could be fined $1,000 and spend as many as six months in prison.

With the new law, New Jersey has become the first state to institute an official drunk-droning ban. However, 38 states or more are currently investigating the addition of such restrictions to their legal codes. As of 2017, 17 states had already created drone regulations. As more and more private citizens purchase drones, we could see even more regulations created in the years to come.

Are you concerned about potentially getting into trouble for flying your drone? Were you accused of a drone crime in New Jersey? You can defend yourself against the allegations, but considering that this is a very new area of the law, it’s important that you fully understand the nuances of the criminal justice system in New Jersey before choosing a strategy of defense against your charges.

Source: The Verge, “You could be fined and jailed for drunk droning in New Jersey,” Natt Garun, accessed Feb. 08, 2018