Both the U.K Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are offering digital safety resources to users, and potential users, of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in advance of the upcoming holiday season.
The CAA and NATS, a U.K. air navigation services provider, have developed a new website, dronesafe.uk, where the operators of small UAS, commonly referred to as drones, can find the “dronecode,” a simple summary of rules to follow when flying a drone.
“Dronesafe.uk is designed to help ensure that drone users in the U.K. can easily access the information they need about how to fly their drones safely and legally, without endangering others,” according to a statement on the website.
The CAA’s dronecode comprises six basic rules:
- Always keep your drone in sight.
- Stay below 400 ft.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions every time you fly.
- Maintain the proper distance from people and property — 150 ft (50 m); and from crowds and built up areas — 500 ft (150 m).
- Remember that legal responsibility for each flight lies with the operator.
- Stay well away from aircraft, airports and airfields. Endangering the safety of an aircraft is a criminal offense punishable by up to five years in prison.
The site also offers information on training and links to various resources, including drone safety videos.
In the United States, FAA recently a released a video reminding operators to register their drones with the FAA and to follow safety rules. “A drone is an aircraft, you are its pilot, and safety is your responsibility,” says the video.