UK Drone Regulations: Restricted Flight around Airports
Drones are a hugely popular gadget and becoming cheaper, more high tech and more user-friendly all the time. They can be bought in a range of types and sizes and can contain optional extras, the most common of which would be cameras.
Being so popular, many nations have implemented laws concerning drones due to their ability to enter airspace that may be forbidden or restricted; this was demonstrated in the UK recently when Gatwick airport came to a standstill around Christmas time. This time of the year is among the busiest and caused many to suffer due to delays and cancellations. Just a few weeks later, there was a similar incident took place at Heathrow airport.
Restricting airspace is one of the crucial ways in which prevention of this an occur and the UK is looking to make certain amendments to the law on the topic.
At this time, there is a restriction on drones from entering the airspace up to one km of any airport. However, with the recent incidents considered, the no-fly zone is to be expanded around all airports up to a five km distance.
Further to this, police will be given the power to search individuals if they suspect them of flying drones around the restricted areas. On top of this, any data held on a drone regarding its flights or camera footage may be obtained by the police with a warrant. Anyone found to be ignoring this law and having ill intent will be presented with penalties and potential prison time depending on the level of disruption caused.
This amendment is to come into effect from March 13 2019. Considering the continually increasing number of incidents of this kind between aircraft and drones, and the huge disruptions caused, the change is a necessary one, and it is best to introduce as quickly as possible.