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European Drone laws
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5501 52 2016-4-16
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frank.dellaert
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Belgium
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Just yesterday Belgian drone laws have become effective and they are said to be "not much different from the same laws in other EU-states".

If that is true DJI moght as well start to close its retail-outlets in Europe because there is not much a private person is allowed to do with it's aircraft.
Core of the law is the difference between 'Private' and 'Professional' use.
Professional then is anything more than what is allowed Privately.
And what is allowed privately ? Flights up to a height of 100 feet (30 m) above private terrain (meaning your own backyard, or if you're lucky, rich or a farmer a bit more if you have a big garden or agricultural properties) IF there are NO persons under the aircraft and IF there is NO possibility to see other people's properties. This limits the height of flying in urban areas to about 10 feet (3 m) because any heigher than that you are bound to catch a glimpse of your neighbor's dog or wife.

If you want to fly 'Professionally' than you need to REGISTER your aircraft as...well..euh.. an aircraft , just like the next Airbus A380, have a licence to fly it and fly not higher than 90 m (300 feet). And if you want to fly over places where people are gathering you need separate license each time you want to do that , froim the local and/or state-authorities.

Remains the question: "How the police is going to find the owner of the 'aircraft' and/or get it to the ground ?" They can't shoot it down as they don't know where possibly heavy pieces will come down. In the Netrherlands falcons (meaning the living birds) are trained to pick drones out of the air...
2016-4-16
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birdingbilly
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So what can you do on say a deserted beach or forest ? - can you fly over public land and if so at what max height ?
2016-4-16
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nigelw
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Looks like I'll be voting to leave the EU for sure then.
2016-4-16
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birdingbilly
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-16 14:56
Looks like I'll be voting to leave the EU for sure then.

+1........
2016-4-16
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frank.dellaert
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Belgium
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birdingbilly Posted at 2016-4-16 15:53
So what can you do on say a deserted beach or forest ? - can you fly over public land and if so at w ...

As far as I understand 'Private property' should be translated into 'property of the pilot of the aircraft' or 'property of a third person that specifically gives the pilot admission to his or her private property'. So, no flying over public property as public property is property of the community and then you need permission of the community.
In reality this means flying for private persons is exclusively restricted to areas where RC planes and copters can be flown.
2016-4-16
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birdingbilly
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frank.dellaert Posted at 2016-4-16 15:54
As far as I understand &aposrivate property' should be translated into 'property of the pilot of the  ...

Not good.  I suggest you move to the UK before 23 June
2016-4-16
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phantom-four.co
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Croatia
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Belgian laws are very different from dutch ones so the statement "not much different from the same laws in other EU-states" is definitely inaccurate. Not just for dones though. Regulation is also much more restrictive for kitesurfers.
2016-4-16
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frank.dellaert
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Belgium
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phantom-four.co Posted at 2016-4-16 19:21
Belgian laws are very different from dutch ones so the statement "not much different from the same l ...

I fear you do not have the latest information about the Netherlands. Last update of he law was in july 2015 and since then flight up to 400 feet (120 m) was allowed, not above GATHERINGS of people, harbours, buildings, villages or towns and not in the vicinity (5km) of airports.

That WAS the regulation. Now there is a NEW law in parliament which will regulate all non-professional use of drones and will limit the height of flying to 50 m (170 feet) and, guess what, for the rest of this new law ready to be voted it is exactly the same as the Belgian law...
2016-4-17
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nigelw
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frank.dellaert Posted at 2016-4-17 09:53
I fear you do not have the latest information about the Netherlands. Last update of he law was in  ...

Sounds like Belgium, Netherlands & other EU countries want to make it difficult for absolutely no practical or safety reason whatsoever.  People will still fly legally at 50m, but will be more likely to have problems & crash.  Electricity pylons in the UK can be 55m tall & there's also more chance of losing a good signal.
This is why I want out of the EU asap, so we have some voting rights against stupid laws in general.
2016-4-17
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frank.dellaert
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Belgium
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-17 11:04
Sounds like Belgium, Netherlands & other EU countries want to make it difficult for absolutely no p ...

Well, I would agree with you if these were European laws but they are not, they are national laws.
So, maybe it would be good to look up what the British Parliament has on it's sleeve because I fear being member of EU will not make much of a difference in this matter.
2016-4-17
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talk2t_c
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France
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They rules were updated in France last month and as far as I can see nothing has changed.
2016-4-17
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FlyGuy
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Belgium
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There are indeed different laws in the EU.
Unfortunately Belgium has one of the worst.
They have created 3 categories.
Category 3 :
domestic use, in your own backyard, hight limited to 10meters
Category 2:
non professional use, height up to 45meters
you need a license to fly and your drone needs to be registrated (cost € 1250 for the course and € 500 registration fee per drone)
category 1b:
professional use non high risk
flight altitude limited to 96 meters
need for license (cost € 2500 and € 500 registration fee)
category 1a :
thes same as 1b but high risk (flying of crowds), price is the same but much more paper work (logbook, etc) before you can start flying and only allowed with drones with more than 4 props.
All these course can be followed in aviation schools. Meaning this is serious stuff. More or less the things a pilot of a small aircraft needs to know.
So yes, it will be almost impossible to fly without a license. That is, if the police will follow this law. My guess is that as long you fly using your common sense, no one will take action. But there will always be stupid people doing stupid things, thereby making it worse for the rest of us !!
Although they claim that everything in the EU should be the same, not so with this law.
No need for a license in France, Germany, Greece, etc.
Only one thing to do, get a license
2016-4-17
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phantom-four.co
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Croatia
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frank.dellaert Posted at 2016-4-17 10:53
I fear you do not have the latest information about the Netherlands. Last update of he law was in  ...

The latest version of the proposed regulation as I saw it keeps the current regulation. However, one big change is that commercial operation with drones under 4kg will actually be permitted, albeit under stricter rules, without additional licensing. Flying over villages and towns won't change however, that is where it currently is confusing. You are allowed to fly over buildings, you're just not allowed to fly over "continuous buildings". Latest updates from the minister in charge lean towards more leniency rather than more restriction
2016-4-17
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Bullflyer
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-17 17:04
Sounds like Belgium, Netherlands & other EU countries want to make it difficult for absolutely no p ...

Then you will have to move to the North Pole, because in your country, and in the future you will have the same limits, for sure !!! Let me know something about that and I'll try to find a nice land for you there
2016-4-17
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ChristianLewisP
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-16 14:56
Looks like I'll be voting to leave the EU for sure then.

I will be voting to leave. The EU interferes with everything.
2016-4-17
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golf_sierra
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Germany
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ChristianLewisP Posted at 2016-4-17 19:40
I will be voting to leave. The EU interferes with everything.

We'll talking here about sovereign countries and the local law they apply within their countries. This has nothing to do with Brussels/EU. It's just the improper way how politicians handle the drone issue - and that still is very different from one country to another.
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gasturbine59
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United Kingdom
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Vote to leave the EU , you know it makes sense!!
2016-4-17
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frank.dellaert
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gasturbine59 Posted at 2016-4-17 21:17
Vote to leave the EU , you know it makes sense!!

One of the things that a Brexit will mean for British customers is that imported technology (like drones for example) will get an estimated 13,5 % more expensive.
2016-4-17
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birdingbilly
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frank.dellaert Posted at 2016-4-17 21:22
One of the things that a Brexit will mean for British customers is that imported technology (like  ...

Why........ ?
2016-4-17
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nigelw
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Bullflyer Posted at 2016-4-17 17:55
Then you will have to move to the North Pole, because in your country, and in the future you will  ...

I don't think we will.  Our rules are not very old & there's no reason for them to be changed.  The UK CAA are spending their time making sure the EU don't try to enforce their own laws in the UK.
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nigelw
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golf_sierra@lib Posted at 2016-4-17 18:51
We'll talking here about sovereign countries and the local law they apply within their countries.  ...

That's the case right now, but in future the aim is for everyone in the EU to have the same laws.  We already have many laws in the UK that were agreed by politicians abroad who we cannot vote for as a country.
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phantom-four.co
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Croatia
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-17 11:04
Sounds like Belgium, Netherlands & other EU countries want to make it difficult for absolutely no p ...

Don't get too excited yet:

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-36067591#

Could change things for the UK
2016-4-17
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phantom-four.co
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Croatia
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Because all trade agreements will need to be re-negotiated. And as the UK relies on import they don't have leverage
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nigelw
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phantom-four.co Posted at 2016-4-17 22:59
Don't get too excited yet:

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-36067591#

I doubt it'll change any laws.  The laws are already in place, so the only problem is obviously enforcing them.
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birdingbilly
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phantom-four.co Posted at 2016-4-17 22:59
Don't get too excited yet:

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-36067591#

We already have laws against flying near airports - unfortunately we also have some idiots that think the law doesn't apply to them.
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phantom-four.co
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birdingbilly Posted at 2016-4-18 00:03
We already have laws against flying near airports - unfortunately we also have some idiots that th ...

Same everywhere unfortunately. What I meant is that politicians after the populist vote will likely suggest even more strict legislation
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phantom-four.co
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-18 00:02
I doubt it'll change any laws.  The laws are already in place, so the only problem is obviously en ...

sorry, replied to the second comment first but same answer
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nigelw
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phantom-four.co Posted at 2016-4-17 23:08
sorry, replied to the second comment first but same answer

I don't think the politicians care too much about drones, they have too many other things to be concerned about right now.  I do think there will be more chance of things like registration & insurance, which might deter the ignorant from buying drones in the first place, which can only be a good thing.
2016-4-17
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phantom-four.co
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-18 00:17
I don't think the politicians care too much about drones, they have too many other things to be co ...

It really doesn't matter much what politicians care about when going for the popular vote. Let's face it, most politicians never make good on their election promises. Doesn't matter where we are in the world.

What matters is popular opinion and that's something that's very much influenced by the media. Again, no  matter where we are in the world.
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Bullflyer
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-18 05:36
I don't think we will.  Our rules are not very old & there's no reason for them to be changed.  Th ...

The potential danger that a drone fall on a crowd of people, or a populated area is the same in London, Madrid, Sydney or Hong Kong. And will remain the same in any area near an airport. Now someone tell me with arguments that if UK is outside EU, this potential danger will be different and then the laws will have to be more permissive.
Yesterday you had a clear example in Heathrow Airport.
Do not mix things, this is not a political forum.
2016-4-18
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nigelw
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Bullflyer Posted at 2016-4-18 18:16
The potential danger that a drone fall on a crowd of people, or a populated area is the same in Lo ...

We already have the laws to prevent these things.  What we don't have is such strict height & privacy limitations, which wouldn't change anything.  The laws are already in place to prevent the clear example at Heathrow.

I don't care if it's not a political forum, I'm discussing drone law, which this forum is very interested in.
2016-4-18
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info
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-16 15:56
Looks like I'll be voting to leave the EU for sure then.

Good choice!
The Netherlands already gave there opinion on the EU, now it's your turn
2016-4-18
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Bullflyer
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-19 01:23
We already have the laws to prevent these things.  What we don't have is such strict height & priv ...

When you say:  "What we do not Have Is Such strict privacy height & Limitations, Which would not change anything.". It is clear that is what you think about that, but keep in mind that not everyone thinks the same as you . As not all the English want to leave the EU (As an example).
I don't know your laws, but about European drones law, what things are too strict for you, and would not change anything ?
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golf_sierra
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Germany
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birdingbilly Posted at 2016-4-18 00:03
We already have laws against flying near airports - unfortunately we also have some idiots that th ...

Good point.
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nigelw
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Bullflyer Posted at 2016-4-18 19:12
When you say:  "What we do not Have Is Such strict privacy height & Limitations, Which would not c ...

The altitude laws the OP mentions.

Flights up to 30m above private terrain - that just about ends most peoples chance of using drones for photography or videography.  Who wants to take photos/videos of the same things all the time.  Is it safer to fly at 30m than 120m?  It's debatable.

Not being allowed to see other people's property! - that's nothing to do with safety, just privacy, which is nothing to do with safety & isn't likely to happen in the UK (you can video or photograph pretty much anyone or anything if standing on public land).
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birdingbilly
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Bullflyer Posted at 2016-4-18 19:12
When you say:  "What we do not Have Is Such strict privacy height & Limitations, Which would not c ...

Lets take height limits as an example - the OP has posted that in Belgium the max height you can fly at as a hobbyist is 45m - in the UK the max height is 122 m - so this begs the question what is the issue in Belgium with flying in the range of 45m to 122m ?  Does Belgium have lots of other aircraft flying around below 122m ?  Is a drone falling from 45m likely to cause any less damage than one falling from 122m ? Can a peeping Tom be more invasive by flying at 122m than 45m ?  I just don't get it.
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wellsi
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-18 18:23
We already have the laws to prevent these things.  What we don't have is such strict height & priv ...

Well Nigel, not everyone is as relaxed about the present laws as you unfortunately.  

A London MP has already called for compulsory registration:
http://www.standard.co.uk/news/l ... lties-a3227501.html

And the Dept Of Transport has a major public consultation planned for Spring and Summer this year to establish what needs to happen to regulate drones:
http://dronespublicdialogue.co.uk/

So it's easy to jump to the conclusion that we're getting a load of scare stories at just the wrong time....

Ian
2016-4-18
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wellsi
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birdingbilly Posted at 2016-4-18 20:08
Lets take height limits as an example - the OP has posted that in Belgium the max height you can fl ...

The height limit in the UK is actually 1,000 ft or around 300 metres if you have a mate spotting with you.
FPV exemption by the CAA
http://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/1108.pdf

2016-4-18
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Flipperman
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nigelw Posted at 2016-4-16 14:56
Looks like I'll be voting to leave the EU for sure then.

The UK goverment is due to report on drones in a few months. I expect they'll put restrictions in place. Hopefully it won't be as severe as this.....maybe registration like the US?
2016-4-18
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jrm11
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Bullflyer Posted at 2016-4-17 12:55
Then you will have to move to the North Pole, because in your country, and in the future you will  ...

Good luck with that.

I have it on good authority that the elf commission is planning some strict regulations for the North Pole. Santa Claus has promised to sign them into law as soon as they cross his desk.

There have been numerous drone sightings by the reindeer in recent months. Dasher and Prancer report seeing a Phantom 3 as close as one mile away from their reindeer games training area. It's white plastic body clearly showed up against the white snow of the region, so there is no doubt as to the veracity of the claim.

Word has that without official restrictions, the next DJI firmware update will have the North Pole as an NFZ. SWP (Santa's workshop ATC tower) is working with the map providers to make the area off limits.

Personally, I think it is Yukon Corneilus ruining it for the rest of us. He always was a rebel and is probably using his drone to scout for "silver and gold" without an FAA exemption.

At this rate, drones will be exiled to the island of misfit toys. However, with the current raduis and mission length limits, it will not be possbile to create a waypoint mission to see the fly the full island.
2016-4-18
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