GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
HOUSE BILL 94
Committee Substitute Favorable 3/30/17
Short Title: Emergency Management/Drone Use.
February 15, 2017
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT to authorize AN emergency management AGENCY to use unmanned aircraft systems for emergency management response purposes.
The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:
SECTION 1. G.S. 15A‑300.1 reads as rewritten:
"§ 15A‑300.1. Restrictions on use of unmanned aircraft systems.
(c) Law Enforcement Exceptions. – Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, the use of unmanned aircraft systems by law enforcement agencies of the State or a political subdivision of the State is not prohibited in the following instances:
(1) To counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or organization if the United States Secretary of Homeland Security or the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety determines that credible intelligence indicates that such a risk exists.
(2) To conduct surveillance in an area that is within a law enforcement officer's plain view when the officer is in a location the officer has a legal right to be.
(3) If the law enforcement agency first obtains a search warrant authorizing the use of an unmanned aircraft system.
(4) If the law enforcement agency possesses reasonable suspicion that, under particular circumstances, swift action is needed to prevent imminent danger to life or serious damage to property, to forestall the imminent escape of a suspect or the destruction of evidence, to conduct pursuit of an escapee or suspect, or to facilitate the search for a missing person.
(5) To photograph gatherings to which the general public is invited on public or private land.
(c1) Emergency Management Agency Exceptions. – Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, an emergency management agency as defined in G.S. 166A‑19.3(9) may use unmanned aircraft systems for incident command, area reconnaissance, personnel and equipment deployment monitoring, and other related emergency management response purposes.
SECTION 2. This act is effective when it becomes law.