UK drone registration deadline is today

  • UK drone pilots must register their details with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) by the end of today or face a fine of £1,000 and potential criminal charges if they fly them illegally or negligently.

    Anyone in possession of a drone which weighs more than 250g (8.8oz) must register it with the regulator online. The drone operator must be over 18 and pay a £9 annual fee. Only 50,000 people within the UK have registered with the CAA, although they estimate that there are 130,000 drone users in Britain.

    Anyone at any age can still fly a drone as long as they complete a free 20 question multiple choice quiz online. Said drone must still be registered with an adult.

    In December 2018, drone sightings on the runways at Gatwick Airport caused havoc for thousands of Christmas travellers. Around 1,000 flights had to be cancelled or diverted over a 36-hour period as a result.

    DJI, the largest consumer drone maker in the world, recently demonstrated a new protocol that enables people to use smartphones to identify nearby drones and pinpoint where their pilots are located.

    Simon Smith, a pilot instructor at the Phantom Flight School in Maidstone, Kent, told the BBC that new technologies like this can help keep the skies safe when combined with the latest regulations. He said: “We've got to share the air safely and in order to do that, everybody has to got to know where everybody else is."

    RELATED: UK drone pilots must register by the end of November or face fines

    The National Police Chiefs' Council lead for the criminal use of drones, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Lucy D'Orsi, said: "We have plans in place to protect the public and we will pursue, investigate and prosecute anyone who uses a drone illegally or in a dangerous way that puts people at risk."

    License exemptions have been granted to members of certain drone-flying organisations: The UK Drone Association (Arpas UK), the Large Model Association, FPV UK, the British Model Flying Association and the Scottish Aeromodellers' Association. Pilots of drones uner 250g will also not need to register.

    In October 2019, high street retailer John Lewis said it had stopped selling drones in May amid concerns they were being misused by the general public.

    RELATED: Gareth Rowan "There's an ability in every disability"

    Source: BBC News

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

    Got a news-related tip you’d like to see covered on Sync NI? Email the editorial team for our consideration.

Share this story