As small drones become more affordable, hobbyists increasingly use them for aerial photography or simply for the fun of flying. Yet crashing drones can cause personal injuries or property damage.
Drones can also be used inappropriately. Spying on a neighbor by looking through windows with a drone’s camera is likely to result in an angry response, and possibly an arrest. Flying a drone near a public event may also raise concerns of terrorism.
If you want to fly a drone, use common sense. You also need to obey the rules.
It is legal to fly hobbyist drones in Australia, but flyers must comply with the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CTH). One set of regulations applies to commercial use of drones. If you plan to use drones in a delivery service, for example, you will need to have a certified drone pilot operate the drone.
The regulations governing recreational use of drones are less strict, but drone operators must be aware of the rules and comply with them to avoid stiff fines. The most important rules are these:
In addition to those specific rules, drone operators have a general duty to exercise care while flying. You should always check your batteries to make sure your drone does not lose power and crash into someone’s house, car, or head. If you do injure a person or property with your drone, you will probably be responsible for paying compensation to the victim.
“Stunt” flying should never be attempted in areas where the drone may crash into persons or occupied property if the stunt does not work. Using a drone to harass someone by “dive bombing” or otherwise placing someone in fear may lead to assault charges in addition to fines for violating drone operation rules.
Disclaimer : This article is just a summary of the subject matter being discussed and should not be regarded as a comprehensive legal advice for you to defend yourself alone. If you are charged with criminal offences, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance from criminal lawyers.