Officials at Hamptons Drone-a-Drome, the only legal takeoff and landing site for drone aircraft east of the Shinnecock Canal, responded to public outcry this week by issuing new rules regarding hours during which users can launch or land their drones there.
They also specified flight paths for drones to avoid densely populated areas, including residential neighborhoods, beaches, and village and hamlet commercial districts. Meanwhile, Hamptons police have already been struggling to enforce the previous, less restrictive takeoff and landing laws.
“We’ve been receiving noise complaints practically nonstop since Christmas,” explains Drone-a-Drome director Peter Packesel. “That’s when the number of drones in use in the Hamptons took off, as it were.”
According to residents living close to the Drone-a-Drome, the strident sound of drones has been constant and inescapable.
“I haven’t slept since Boxing Day, and I’m about ready to take the law into my own hands,” says Dorothy Chambers, whose neighborhood borders the Drone-a-Drome.
The new restrictions effectively limit drone use to daylight hours, but persistent rumors and a few “dronies” in the know say an injunction will likely be filed, putting a hold on any enforcement of the new laws.
Doubtless, an appeal would follow, so area lawyers have mounted the difficult task of finding any past cases covering similar ground locally, but so far they’re coming up empty.
Things could get ugly from here.