FAA extends drone ban over Keystone oil spill site in Kansas
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a second notice to pilots and drone operators in Kansas, prohibiting them from flying over the site where TC Energy’s Keystone pipeline spilled nearly 600,000 gallons of sludgy oil into a creek earlier this month.
The first Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM) prohibiting aircraft operations in the area was issued on December 16 with an ending time for Wednesday night. But now, a new NOTAM has declared that only relief aircraft operations under the direction of TC Energy will be authorized in the airspace until December 27.
It’s not unusual for the FAA to prohibit drones from flying over any emergency or rescue operations. But as local nonprofit news outlet Kansas Reflector points out, drone footage is among the only means for citizens to assess the damage because the site is closed to the media. “Even lawmakers are not allowed there for a briefing,” the news operation reports.
When Canada-based TC…