UTICA — It is safe to say that the air space above the Boilermaker Road Race is a no-fly zone.
An added focus of Boilermaker security experts is to ensure that drones — or unmanned aerial vehicles — aren’t allowed above any of the Boilermaker events, said Utica police Lt. James Holt.
“Drones are a unique issue that have come to the forefront,” he said.
The first worry is about an inexperienced drone operator. Holt suggested a situation in which a beginning operator, unaware of FAA regulations, might fly into an area that’s too far away from the controller.
The operator also could then involuntarily lose control and cause the drone to drop on a crowd or a runner.
“And now you have an incursion on the race course,” Holt added, “and you have all sort of chaos going on.”
The second, Holt said, is that drones could be used as a weapon.
It’s also against federal regulation to operate a drone above a mass gathering like