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Drone Safety Rules

drone safety rules

Here is the a summary of the CAA drone safety rules you need to follow if you are flying a drone in the U.K.  When you fly a drone in the UK it is your responsibility to be aware of the drone safety rules that are in place to keep everyone safe. Follow these simple steps to make sure you are flying safely and legally.

Simple Steps

  1. Line of Sight - Always keep your drone in sight so you can see and avoid other things when flying
  2. Always fly below 400ft (120m) - this reduces the risk of any conflict with a manned aircraft or helicopter
  3. Follow the drone Manufacturers instructions - both pre-flight and in-flight checks keep your drone and people around you safe.
  4. Always fly a safe distance from people and Property - rule is 150ft (50m) from people and property, 500ft (150m) from crowds and built up areas
  5. You are legally responsible for each flight - Failure to fly responsibly could result in a criminal prosecution.
  6. Stay away from airports and aircraft - If your drone endangers an aircraft it is a criminal offence with a five year prison sentence.

Drone School UK has a module in every drone training course covering all aspects of flying drones safely.

CLICK HERE to download the CAA Drone Safe Drone Code document.

Drones should be fun to fly, and will be if you know what you are doing and stick to the drone safety rules. Serious problems can happen if you don’t know what you’re doing and you are no aware of the drone safety rules.

Not everyone may have your enthusiasm for drones. Avoid flying your drone in residential areas because drones can raise privacy concerns, so as a courteous drone pilot, you’ll try to allay those concerns by flying in less populated or rural areas.

Never fly near airports (obviously), schools, churches, and stadiums. The same applies to flying around power stations, prisons and detention centres, and busy roads especially A roads and motorways.  Try to find a wide open field without trees, buildings, cars, towers, trees, and other possible hazards.

Drone Assist is the new drone safety app from NATS, the UK’s main air traffic control provider.  Here is the LINK TO DOWNLOAD the app for both Android and IOS.  The App gives users an interactive map of airspace used by commercial air traffic so that you can see areas to avoid, as well as ground hazards that may pose safety, security or privacy risks when you’re out flying your drone.

Getting Paid for Using Your Drone

If you are planning on using a drone for profit, such as to film a video or a commercial or any project where you’ll be paid, then you will need permission from the CAA. You have to be over 18 years of age.

To get this CAA Permission, you will need book on commercial drone training course to:

  • demonstrate a sufficient understanding of aviation theory (airmanship, airspace, aviation law and good flying practice)
  • pass a practical flight assessment (flight test)
  • develop basic procedures for conducting the type of flights you want to do and set these out in an Operations Manual
  • Have commercial drone liability insurance

There are a number of recognised assessment organisations (in the UK who can help you meet these requirements. On the most commercial drone training courses they will generally help you develop an operations manual and will offer advice on completing any additional paperwork.

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