The UK government announced plans to introduce drone registration and safety awareness courses for owners of drone on Saturday.
This was announced by the Secretary of State for Transport – Rt Hon Chris Grayling and reported on the BBC News on Saturday morning. This drone news then filled the newspaper headlines yesterday.
Drone School UK launched earlier this year has a three hour fun drone flying course at six locations which includes safety awareness based on the drone safe drone code. The taster course is aimed a the general public looking to fly drones.
This is a basic drone training course where the public get to fly a range of DJI drones on the simulator and outside for real.
The courses are proving popular via the experience day companies Into the Blue and Red Letter Days.
This basic drone training is fun and relaxed but gives the students a clear awareness of drone flying safety and practical experience of flying a drone.
The government is proposing registration of all drones over 250 grams, either at the point of sale or online via an app and website. It is not clear yet if they will try to charge for registration.
However in the US the FAA introduced a drone registration scheme in December 2015 for all UAVs weighing more than 250 grams flown for any purpose. This drone registration was free at first then a $5 charge came in. In May 2017 a federal court in Washington, D.C. has ruled against that requirement, deeming the FAA’s mandatory registration “unlawful.”
The ruling was the conclusion of a lawsuit brought against the FAA in February of 2016. At the time, hobbyist pilots alleged that the FAA didn’t have the power to make the drone registrations mandatory. The suit argued that drones, which are considered “model aircraft” by the FAA, fell under the protective umbrella of the 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act, which prevents the agency from setting forth any new rules or regulations.
So bearing the US drone registration in mind let’s hope the UK government can learn and not make a similar mistake.
Basic Drone Training
The government and the various regulatory bodies have also called for some form of drone competency training, but it is not clear yet if this is just a multiple question online process or real flying.
Our three hour basic drone training course give the student a car understanding of drone safety and flying rules, along with real flying on the DJI flight simulator and outside for real. Students leave Drone School with a respect and a basic understanding of drones.
Trying a DJI Drone before You Buy
We provide the latest DJI drone from the larger DJI Inspire model down to the DJI Mavic Pro for the student to fly. This part of the training is particularly useful for people who are thinking of buying a DJI drone which is a considerable investment starting at £1,000.
We do no have any link to any UK drone retailers so are able to give unbiased advice if asked.
Social Media and Public Reaction
As the news of the possible drone legislation was announced on Saturday, the social media networks we hot with both pro and anti reaction. Then when the Sunday newspaper put their spin on the news, a second wave of social media reaction and interaction took place.
We are monitoring all the drone related social media reactions and comments and plan to comment about this in detail in another blog post.