Rylan Loemker

CASA to cut drone red tape

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http://www.flightsafetyaustralia.com/2016/03/casa-to-cut-drone-red-tape/

Taking effect from 29 September 2016 commercial operators flying RPAs weighing less than two kilograms will not require an operator’s certificate or a remote pilot licence.

 

I feel this is a bit of a kick in the guts. CASA have almost done a complete backflip on an over regulated industry to almost none at all. Soon the sky's of Australia will be filled with Phantom 4 and their pilots have not had any training or certification.

 

During my training I learnt a lot about the aviation industry and how drones and manned aircraft interact. Basically these changes mean that drone operators with drones less than 2kg can fly without this knowledge.

 

The other harsh reality is that an operator’s certificate costs somewhere between $5,000-$10,000 (AUD) and a remote pilot licence around $3,000 (AUD). So, those operators with Phantoms or other drones <2kg who just went through the 6 month process and forked out at least $10,000 are now told they didn't need to!

 

I really think that all commercial drone operators should have to at least do some form of training i.e. remote pilot licence

 

 

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Agreed.... All operators should undertake some training. Understanding the basics will save the industry a lot of headaches 

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@Rylan Loemker Sorry that happened down there. I am surprised that CASA made those changes. For my masters degree part of my final project looked at how CASA has been one of the world's leaders in aviation safety. They helped put the nationwide Automatic Dependent Surveilliance-Broadcast (ADS-B) system in place in Austrailia to make general and commercial aviation safer. It seems really counterproductive to elimnate the training and certification requirements for UAS operators. 

Here in the States we are waiting for the FAA to hopefully make changes to our existing UAS rules in June. I really hope they do not eliminate formal training requirements. Like you said it poses a significant risk with a bunch of untrained commercial UAS operators buzzing all over the place. Training should be mandatory. 

Chris

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Thanks @Orangutan39.

I figured CASA were well ahead of the game but I think in the UAV arena, is still early days.

I do believe operators under 2kgs will have greater restrictions as they'll be unable to seek additional permanent permits such as night flying, flying within 5.5k radius of airfield and operations within restricted areas - but this is not clear at this stage.

Admittedly, high end video production (dual operator type productions), environmental surveys and other specialised work requires systems that exceed 2kgs, so the under 2kg will only really apply to those who want to go take photos and do other small productions. I'll just need to set myself apart by offering those services that others current with their current smaller systems.

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Hi @Rylan Loemker, part of the reason I logged in this morning was to post this news! Was curious what your thoughts were, so thanks for beating me to the punch and sharing :)

This is really interesting, and the kind of sentiment you're expressing is similar to what many guys in the US who just shelled out $5000-$7000 for a pilot license might feel when that requirement is eventually lifted.

Love what you wrote about setting yourself apart from every other "professional drone pilot." Completely agree.

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