If you aren’t exactly sure what a Drone is, it’s basically a remote control flying apparatus that may also have the ability to take photos or video footage from great heights. Imagine the cool photos you will be able to take of your campsite or of the scenery of the outback when you’re out on the big lap. Finally you’ll be able to capture the real essence of your trip and have stacks of fun while doing so. Unfortunately, as with most things, there are some rules you have to abide by. So here is the latest information from the Australian Government about flying drones.
So what are the regulations?
As of 29th September 2016, the Federal Government has passed legislation which allows people to operate ‘very small’ RPA’s (Remotely Piloted Aircraft) without certification. The term ‘very small’ is defined by drones weighing less than 2kgs. These drones are considered an excluded aircraft and need to still be operated in standard RPA operating conditions (we will get to that).
Standard RPA operating conditions means that the RPA must be operated:
- Within visual line of sight
- Below 400ft
- During the day
- More than 30m away from anyone who is not directly associated with the operation (people being filmed are not considered to be directly associated with the RPA’s operation).
They are NOT to be operated:
- Over a populous area
- Within 3 nautical miles of the movement area of a controlled aerodrome
- In a prohibited area
- In a restricted area that is classified as RA3
- In a restricted area that is classified as RA2 or RA1 otherwise than in accordance with regulation 101.065
- Over an area where a fire, police or other public safety or emergency operation is being conducted without the approval of a person in charge of the operation.
With lots of guidelines, it’s important to do your research as hundreds of dollars’ worth of fines can head your way if you aren’t mindful. It has even been reported that law enforcement personnel have been trolling YouTube accounts for Drone footage that isn’t meeting the standards and sending fines to the user. So, if you are ready for all the fun and excitement of getting your drone into the atmosphere, study up so you don’t get into trouble or hurt anyone. In this case, rules aren’t there to be broken. Here's a cool example of some drone footage out in Emerald.
If you have any queries or questions in relation to the new laws you can visit the Civil Aviation Legislation Amendment here.