Where to register my Drone?
Yesterday, the Department for Transport released new plans to ensure safe drone practise and to protect the public. Measures released for consultation include (21 December 2016)
- Mandatory Registration of new drones
- Tougher penalties for illegal flying near no-fly zones and new signs for no-fly zones at sensitive sites such as airports and prisons
- Making drones electronically identifiable so the owner’s details can be passed to police if they are spotted breaking the law
The consultation will also consider whether there is a need for a new criminal offence for misuse of drones.
Current regulations attempt to balance clear rules on safety and strong penalties for misuse. Companies using drones for commercial purposes need CAA permissions to ensure they are operated responsibly.
Tim Johnson, Policy Director at the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) says: The CAA’s priority is the safe operation of drones and we cannot underestimate the importance of understanding how to use drones safely and responsibly. The new CAA Dronecode, which forms part of our wider drone awareness campaign, is designed to help protect the safety of the wider aviation industry. Drones have significant potential to drive benefits across a range of sectors, from farming to emergency response, healthcare to logistics. The CAA’s safety code and Dronesafe website, and the recently released NATS safety mobile app for drone users are important tools in encouraging safe and legal drone use.
Drone Safe Register (DSR) supports the DfT in pressing for better education, compulsory registration and high profile prosecution for careless operators. Our members and the drone community have been calling for more prosecutions and tougher penalties for illegal drone operators since we launched our register in 2015.
DSR would like to see the UK’s first prosecution of an illegal drone pilot operating commercially without CAA permissions. Until that first prosecution, DSR believes that the problem is here to stay.
DSR is a big advocate of the CAA, as regulators of the UK’s aviation laws. Whilst the launch of the ‘new’ Dronesafe.uk website and NATS mobile app are effective to set the rules and regulations straight. The major problem not being addressed right now is ‘the enforcing of the laws’. The issue is, although perhaps the rules are clear, the regulation of these laws are not being enforced. We know this because our members tell us and we frequently see / hear examples of illegal drone pilots operating commercially without insurance or CAA permission.
To compound the issue, illegal drone operators know the rules are currently not being enforced so they think they can get away with it. Prosecuting and fining an illegal drone pilot will send a clear message and deter other illegal drone pilots. That in DSR’s opinion, will be by far, the most effective way of stopping illegal drone pilots and the best way to make our skies safer.
DSR works hard to educate the public and industry sectors about the UK’s drone laws. Our national marketing campaign, aimed at anybody looking to hire a safe and legal drone pilot, has had an amazing positive impact regarding drone safety awareness. We are proud to inform readers that over 11 million people have been reached through our drone safety awareness campaign.