Permit and Resource Management Department Banner

ENC-010 Special Event - Filming Standard Conditions

Revised 02/17/2012

Filming in Sonoma County Jurisdiction by a Prescriptive Right-of-Way. Many of the county roads on which you will be filming are under Sonoma County jurisdiction by a prescriptive right-of-way and not by a deeded right-of-way. This means that historical usage by the public and maintenance by the County allows the public the right to travel on these roads.

Limits of the prescriptive right-of-way

  1. From the centerline of the traveled way: out (perpendicular) to an existing fence which runs parallel to the centerline of the road.
  2. In the absence of a fence: from the centerline of the traveled way, out (perpendicular) to the back side of an existing roadside ditch.
  3. In the absence of a fence or a ditch: from the centerline of traveled way, out (perpendicular) to a point three feet beyond the edge of pavement.

Filming on Private Property

If you go beyond these limits, you will be on Private Property. You will be subject to trespass laws if permission from the private property owner has not been obtained. Do Not go beyond these limits without permission of the private property owner.


    1. Intermittent traffic breaks (not to exceed 10 minutes) shall be approved and provided by California Highway Patrol Officers.
    2. The Permit Inspector or the California Highway Patrol has the authority to stop any or all activity that is not being performed in strict compliance with the provision of this permit.
    3. Traffic shall not be detoured from the County Highways without the written approval of the permitting agency.
    4. All of the permittee’s production vehicles and equipment shall be legally parked off the traveled way, so that the equipment and personnel do not interfere with the free flow of traffic and/or pedestrians.
    5. Any filming involving the use of any type aircraft shall be done in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations.
    6. All cable and step extensions, which cross the sidewalk, shall be shielded or coned for pedestrian traffic.
    7. No lights shall be erected on the traveled way.
    8. The location of cameras within the right-of-way shall be approved by the permitting agency or the California Highway Patrol.

    Operational permits

    Operational permits shall be obtained from The Sonoma County Fire and Emergency Services Department prior to engaging in the following activities, operations, practices or functions:

    1. Production facilities. To change use or occupancy, or allow the attendance of a live audience, or for wrap parties.
    2. Pyrotechnics and special effects. To use pyrotechnic special effects, open flame, use of flammable or combustible liquids and gases, welding, and the parking of motor vehicles in any building or location used for the purpose of motion picture, television and commercial production.
    3. Live audiences. To install seating arrangements for live audiences in approved production facilities, production studios and sound stages. See Chapter 48. Sonoma 

    Contact Information

    Phone Operator
    Permit Center & Mailing Address
    2550 Ventura Avenue
    Santa Rosa, CA 95403
    38.465074, -122.723705