AERONAUTICS - Terms, defined.

Published: 2017

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For purposes of the State Aeronautics Act and the laws of this state relating to aeronautics, the following words, terms, and phrases shall have the meanings given in this section, unless otherwise specifically defined or unless another intention clearly appears or the context otherwise requires:

(1) Aeronautics means transportation by aircraft; the operation, construction, repair, or maintenance of aircraft, aircraft power plants, and accessories, including the repair, packing, and maintenance of parachutes; and the design, establishment, construction, extension, operation, improvement, repair, or maintenance of airports, restricted landing areas, or other air navigation facilities, and air instruction;

(2) Aircraft means any contrivance now known, hereafter invented, used, or designed for navigation of or flight in the air;

(3) Airport means (a) any area of land or water, except a restricted landing area, which is designed for the landing and takeoff of aircraft, whether or not facilities are provided for the sheltering, servicing, or repairing of aircraft or for receiving or discharging passengers or cargo, (b) all appurtenant areas used or suitable for airport buildings or other airport facilities, and (c) all appurtenant rights-of-way, whether heretofore or hereafter established;

(4) Air navigation facility means any facility, other than one owned or controlled by the federal government, used in, available for use in, or designed for use in aid of air navigation, including airports, restricted landing areas, and any structures, mechanisms, lights, beacons, marks, communicating systems, or other instrumentalities or devices used or useful as an aid or constituting an advantage or convenience to the safe takeoff, navigation, and landing of aircraft, or the safe and efficient operation or maintenance of an airport or restricted landing area and any combination of any or all of such facilities;

(5) Air navigation means the operation or navigation of aircraft in the air space over this state or upon any airport or restricted landing area within this state;

(6) Airman means any individual who engages, as the person in command, or as pilot, mechanic, or member of the crew, in the navigation of aircraft while under way and (excepting individuals employed outside the United States, any individual employed by a manufacturer of aircraft, aircraft engines, propellers, or appliances to perform duties as inspector or mechanic in connection therewith, and any individual performing inspection or mechanical duties in connection with aircraft owned or operated by him or her) any individual who is directly in charge of the inspection, maintenance, overhauling, or repair of aircraft engines, propellers, or appliances and any individual who serves in the capacity of aircraft dispatcher or air traffic control-tower operator;

(7) Air instruction means the imparting of aeronautical information by any aeronautics instructor or in or by any air school or flying club;

(8) Aeronautics instructor means any individual engaged in giving instruction, or offering to give instruction, in aeronautics, either in flying or ground subjects, or both, for hire or reward, without advertising such occupation, without calling his or her facilities an air school or anything equivalent thereto, and without employing or using other instructors. It does not include any instructor in any public school or university of this state or any institution of higher learning duly accredited and approved for carrying on collegiate work while engaged in his or her duties as such instructor;

(9) Airport protection privileges means easements through or other interests in air space over land or water, interests in airport hazards outside the boundaries of airports or restricted landing areas, and other protection privileges, the acquisition or control of which is necessary to insure safe approaches to the landing areas of airports and restricted landing areas and the safe and efficient operation thereof;

(10) Airport hazard means any structure, object of natural growth, or use of land which obstructs the air space required for the flight of aircraft in landing or taking off at any airport or restricted landing area or is otherwise hazardous to such landing or taking off;

(11) Civil aircraft means any aircraft other than a public aircraft;

(12) Commission means the Nebraska Aeronautics Commission;

(13) Director means the Director of Aeronautics;

(14) Division means the Division of Aeronautics of the Department of Transportation;

(15) Flying club means any person, other than an individual, who, neither for profit nor reward, owns, leases, or uses one or more aircraft for the purpose of instruction or pleasure or both;

(16) Location means the general vicinity to be served by a specific airport;

(17) Municipality means any county, city, village, or town of this state and any other political subdivision, public corporation, authority, or district in this state which is or may be authorized by law to acquire, establish, construct, maintain, improve, and operate airports and other air navigation facilities;

(18) Navigable air space means air space above the minimum altitudes of flight prescribed by the laws of this state or by the rules and regulations adopted and promulgated by the division consistent therewith;

(19) Operation of aircraft or operate aircraft means the use of aircraft for the purpose of air navigation and includes the navigation or piloting of aircraft. Any person who causes or authorizes the operation of aircraft, whether with or without the right of legal control, in the capacity of owner, lessee, or otherwise, of the aircraft, shall be deemed to be engaged in the operation of aircraft within the meaning of the statutes of this state;

(20) Privately owned public use airport means any airport owned by a person which is primarily engaged in the business of providing necessary services and facilities for the operation of civil aircraft and which (a) has at least one paved runway, (b) is engaged in the retail sale of aviation gasoline or aviation jet fuel, and (c) possesses facilities for the sheltering, servicing, or repair of aircraft;

(21) Public aircraft means an aircraft used exclusively in the service of any government or of any political subdivision thereof, including the government of any state, territory, or possession of the United States or the District of Columbia, but not including any government-owned aircraft engaged in carrying persons or property for commercial purposes;

(22) Restricted landing area means any area of land, water, or both, which is used or is made available for the landing and takeoff of aircraft, the use of which shall, except in case of emergency, be only as provided from time to time by the commission;

(23) Site means the specific land area to be used as an airport; and

(24) State airway means a route in the navigable air space over and above the lands or waters of this state, designated by the division as a route suitable for air navigation.


  • Laws 1945, c. 5, § 1, p. 75;
  • Laws 1976, LB 460, § 1;
  • Laws 1993, LB 121, § 82;
  • Laws 1995, LB 609, § 1;
  • Laws 2017, LB339, § 1.


  • Department of Aeronautics is created by this article. State ex rel. Beck v. Obbink, 172 Neb. 242, 109 N.W.2d 288 (1961).