Australia Could Ease Drone Restrictions in Major Cities

By admin | Regulation

Apr 24

They plan to add another zone called a “green zone” that allows pilots to fly their unmanned aircraft without having to request permission.

Stephen Jeffery reveals that Airservices Australia is planning on easing drone restrictions around major cities. They plan to add another zone called a “green zone” that allows pilots to fly their unmanned aircraft without having to request permission.

Jeffery reports that Airservices Australia’s current system requires pilots to request approval before flying their drone higher than 400 feet (122 metres) within 3 nautical miles (5.5 kilometres) of airports. Further, the restrictions around Sydney and Bankstown airports include areas of the city’s eastern suburbs as well as the inner west, and as far north as Central station.

Jeffery outlines, “changes to protocols could lead to the adoption of three types of zone for drones near airports: where use would be banned or heavily restricted; amber, requiring prior approval of all flight plans; and green, where users would need to only inform authorities about planned flights, rather than request permission.” Jeffery further reports the green zones will still require drone operators to still adhere to other Civil Aviation Safety Authority rules.

Paddy Goodall, Airservices Australia’s chief traffic controller, spoke at a remote piloted aircraft systems conference in Canberra. Jeffery states that Goodall mentioned the idea they are considering is due to the increasing popularity of unmanned aircraft.

Goodall said, “Our Operational Data Analysis team are in the early stages of work with the Australian Research Centre for Aerospace Automation on how we can use aircraft tracking data and heat maps to identify areas close to major airports where RPAS operations may not need specific authorisation.”

Jeffery further states that Airservices Australia is planning on publishing an updated Concept of Operations within the next coming months with regards to their position on unmanned aircraft.

A Western Australia Council is considering enforcing no-fly zones over parks, beaches, and backyards adding to the controversial drone regulation.

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