Interested in getting your own drone? Check out the Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Flying Drones!
- Higher than 90 m above the ground
- Closer than 75 m from buildings, vehicles, vessels, animals, people or crowds
- Closer than 9 km from the centre of an aerodrome (any airport, heliport, seaplane base or anywhere that aircrafts take-off and land)
- Within controlled or restricted airspace
- Within 9 km of a forest fire
- Where it could interfere with police or first responders
- At night or in clouds
- If you can’t keep it in sight at all times
- If you are not within 500 m of your drone
- If your name, address, and telephone number are not clearly marked on your drone.
Drones come with great responsibility. Transport Canada has regulated the use of drones for personal users. Anyone flying a UAV should be well informed before taking to the sky.
Not only can you not fly your drone near others, you can't fly it too far away from your own location either. For most recreational users this shouldn't be a concern, the most common and affordable drone models only have a range of 100-300 m as it is. If you're a real enthusiast with a top-end model that is fully capable of flying 2 km or more away though, you're going to need to reel it in.
Staying clear of restricted airspace is an obvious and understandable rule, but it can sometimes be confusing to know what space is and isn't considered restricted. Fortunately, there is an online resource you can consult that will highlight trouble areas for you. Just plug your intended flight area into the UAV Site Selection tool and it will let you know if you're cleared for takeoff.
At the end of the day, the new regulations have made it more difficult for the average drone enthusiast to get out there and fly. If you're serious about the hobby and find the rules a bit stifling, consider professional training. Numerous organizations and schools are now offering hands-on professional UAV certification which will not only allow you plenty of practice flight time, but provide you with expanded options upon completion of the course that may make it easier to get permission to fly in otherwise prohibited areas.
Locally, the Waterloo-Wellington Flight Centre offers UAV Pilot Training programs that can be taken to master drone operation for commercial or personal uses.
[Royalty-free stock images courtesy of Pexels.]