UAV is an acronym for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.
An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, commonly known as a drone, is an aircraft without any human pilot, crew, or passengers on board.
The UAV is a component of an unmanned aircraft system, which includes the addition of a ground-based controller and a system of communications with the UAV.
RPAS is an acronym for “Remotely Piloted Aircraft System”.
An Remotely Piloted Aircraft System, is also commonly known as a drone, is an aircraft without any human pilot, crew, or passengers on board.
The RPAS consists of a remotely-piloted aircraft, the required command and control links and any other system elements as may be required, at any point during flight operation.
In Canada and the US anyone can operate a drone recreationally provided they adhere to Transport Canada and Federal Aviation Administration regulations.
To operate a drone commercially within Canada and the US, everyone must complete training approved by Transport Canada and the Federal Aviation Administration.
Additionally, commercial operation of a drone within Canada and the US requires both the operator and the equipment to be certified and registered.
Canada has some of the strictest UAV laws in the world for Commercial UAV operations, which also govern Recreational UAV operations.
Examples of commercial operations include photography and videography, remote sensing, structural inspection, communication tower inspection and much more.
Commercial UAV operations include both basic and advanced operations, for which the rules are consistent for both commercial and recreational operations.
Under the current regulations, there are two categories for drone operations: basic and advanced. These categories are largely determined by the distance between the drone operations and bystanders, as well as airspace rules.
If these three conditions are met, the drone operations are considered basic:
If any one of these three conditions are not met, then the drone operations are considered advanced.
In addition to the general rules and regulations for flying a drone, pilots conducting advanced operations must:
Whether recreational or commercial, the following are the general regulations that apply to all UAV / RPAS Pilots:
If flying a drone outside of basic or advanced operations, such as operating a drone that weighs over 25 kilograms, operating at an altitude higher than 400 feet in the air, operating at a special event or operating beyond the visual line-of-sight, an application for a special flight operations certificate (SFOC) must be submitted to the Minister of Transport. Once granted, the drone operations must be limited only to the specific purpose for which it was intended.
Other considerations before engaging in commercial drone applications, there are many regulatory requirements that must be addressed in addition to the rules and regulations noted above. These requirements include maintaining up-to-date records, adhering to payload restrictions, complying with local by-laws, and following applicable privacy regulations. As many drones retain information or may interfere with the enjoyment of private property, it is important for drone users to consider how to comply with applicable privacy legislation and how to avoid committing privacy-related torts.
Operating drones outside the mandated rules and regulations could result in:
Another consideration to keep in mind; as many drones retain information or may interfere with the enjoyment of private property, it is important for drone users to consider how to comply with applicable privacy legislation and how to avoid committing privacy-related torts.