11:56 GMT09 April 2020
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    In 2015, US authorities installed “drones prohibited” signs around the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California, prompted by a new law forbidding the use of (Unmanned Aircraft Vehicles) UAVs from flying over national parks. The new laws have not stopped some drone owners.

    According to the data from the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, cited by the San Francisco Chronicle, five drones have crashed on the bridge roadway since 2014, despite a National Park Service (NPS) prohibition of the use of UAVs in the surrounding Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The drones are generally used by YouTubers and Instagram users to capture breathtaking sunsets and views of the bridge from above. Currently, Instagram, which is owned and operated by Facebook, has not taken down any bridge drone overflights, although they are expressly forbidden under federal law.

    “These photos do not violate our policies”, Instagram spokeswomen Liza Crenshaw told the San Francisco Chronicle via email. “However, if we receive a valid law enforcement request, we will respond to that accordingly”.

    Some have claimed that the Instagram policy runs contrary to company’s terms of use, which specifies that platform users “can’t do anything unlawful, misleading, or fraudulent or for an illegal or unauthorized purpose”.

    ​The prohibition on using drones around the Golden Gate Bridge was consolidated in 2014 and outlined in public signs around the area a year later. The Federal Aviation Administration has also prohibited drone owners from flying UAVs over moving vehicles.

    According to reports, officials from the Golden Gate National Recreation Area are responding to multiple reports of illegal drone activity on a monthly basis, while officers are contacting the owners of websites publishing the illegal drone videos, warning of potential penalties.

    In 2018, two drones crashed on the bridge, and although there were no injuries, this kind of incident provokes concern among transportation authorities.

    “By the grace of God, it hasn’t hit a car, bicyclist or pedestrian”, said Denis Mulligan, CEO of the transportation district. “We’re not trying to stifle creativity. We’re concerned with all aspects of safety”.
    Tags:
    Drone, UAV, Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Park, United States
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