Police are set to be given powers to prevent the unsafe or criminal use of drones as part of a new package of drone legislation.
The measures are intended to allow drone users to continue flying safely and legally, helping to place the UK at the forefront of the fast-growing drone industry. This will also pave the way for the devices to be harnessed for a range of uses by businesses and public services.
The draft Drone legislation, which will be published next spring, will give officers the right to order operators to ground drones where necessary. Officers will also be able to seize drone parts to prove it has been used to commit an offence.
New measures will also make it mandatory for drone owners to register to improve accountability. And drone operators will be required to use apps – so they can access the information needed to make sure any planned flight can be made safely and legally.
Banning drones from flying near airports or above 400 feet could also form part of the new regulations.
This drone legislation was first announced in July 2017 by the government. You can read our previous article on drone registration and training.
The news comes as funding for a pioneering new drones programme is announced to help cities shape the way this new technology operates and the benefits it brings.
Aviation Minister Baroness Sugg said:
Drones have great potential and we want to do everything possible to harness the benefits of this technology as it develops.
But if we are to realise the full potential of this incredibly exciting technology, we have to take steps to stop illegal use of these devices and address safety and privacy concerns.
These new laws strike a balance, to allow the vast majority of drone users to continue flying safely and responsibly, while also paving the way for drone technology to revolutionise businesses and public services.
The government will publish the draft Drone Bill for consultation and introduce secondary legislation amendments in spring 2018. Changes to the Air Navigation Order will mean that that mean:
- drone users will have to sit safety awareness tests
- users of drones weighing 250 grams and over will in future have to be registered
The government is also working closely with drone manufacturers to use geo-fencing to prevent drones from entering restricted zones.
The Flying High Challenge, funded by the government and run by Nesta in partnership with Innovate UK, is set to launch tomorrow (Monday, 27 November) when cities will be invited to register their interest.
Up to 5 cities will be supported in the research and development of drone technology which could transform critical services in – for example, emergency health services and organ transport, essential infrastructure assessment and repair, and parcel delivery and logistics.
Drone School Basic Drone Training Courses
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 at the general public looking to fly drones safely and build their awareness.
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.
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.
We also welcome the drone registration plan for the UK but the more important part of the announcement is drone user education, basic drone training and recreational drone training courses.
Yes -users can watch YouTube videos and online training but there is no substitute for actual flight training with real DJI drone.
Drone School UK offer drone flight training at six locations in Cheshire, Cornwall, Devon, Hampshire, Gloucestershire and Warwickshire.
Here is what the BBC reported today with the headline UK drone users to sit safety tests under new law.