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Blocking OSHA Drone Inspections Can Trigger Search Warrants (1)

Dec. 27, 2021, 7:29 PMUpdated: Dec. 27, 2021, 8:35 PM

Employers that don’t allow OSHA to fly drones over work sites as part of a safety inspection could find the agency seeking a search warrant to permit the enforcement flights.

The explicit search warrant option is part of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s newly updated guidance for inspectors using drones, also called small unmanned aircraft. The guidance took effect Dec. 22.

The agency first issued such instructions in May 2018 after at least one case where an inspector used a personal drone for an inspection.

Phillip Russell, a partner with Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart P.C. in ...