CASA floats mandatory drone registration, accreditation scheme

By on 29 January, 2019

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is seeking input on a proposal for mandatory registration of all RPA over 250 grams, with a compulsory accreditation course for operators.

CASA’s proposed changes were supported in principle by the federal government in late last year, responding to a Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport inquiry.

Under the proposed scheme, all commercially operated remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), and all recreational RPAs over 250 grams would be subject to mandatory registration, with a proposed fee of $20 for recreational and $100-$160 for commercially operated drones.

Operators in the excluded category would also be required to watch a video and respond to a quiz on drone regulations, with no such requirement for  remote pilot’s license (RePL) holders.

Material released by CASA describing the proposed changes state that the new rules are intended to increase safety through improved compliance with flight rules, better targeting of safety information to operators that need it most, and improved ease of enforcement.

The proposed changes will be introduced from July 1, 2019 for ReOC holders (registration only), September 1 for excluded operators, and November for recreational RPA operators.

CASA is seeking input on the detail of the proposed new policy until February 22.

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