New drone safety rules in the works for UAE

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The Emirates Standardisation and Metrology Authority (Esma) has prepared draft regulations on safety terms and conditions for the use of drones, WAM reports.

Abdullah Al Maeeni, director-general of Esma, said that the regulations force drone users to install height and distance limiters, which ensure regulating the use of drones in allowed fields.

Al Maeeni pointed out that the regulations include a number of practical and reasonable solutions to all issues pertaining to the wrong and irresponsible use of drones. He added that the regulations oblige producers and companies to use advanced technologies and innovations during the manufacturing process, which will allow Esma and governmental bodies to supervise, regulate and follow up on drones used in the UAE’s airspace.

Drone identification

Al Maeeni said that the regulations provide mechanisms to identify any drone in the UAE airspace through the use of a tracker. Manufacturers are obliged to install trackers in every drone, which will allow government bodies or Esma to identify the owner, as well as his personal information.

Saif Mohammad Al Suwaidi, director-general of the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), said that Esma’s federal regulations stress the importance of drone users abiding by set national standards. Al Suwaidi said that the regulations also specify what acts are categorised as illegal drone activities due to the diversity of the segment of drone users, particularly those who are not very familiar with piloting drones.

Al Suwaidi said that the authority has issued a booklet on the safe use of drones that contains signboards located in areas that forbid the use of drones. He said that the booklet and signboards are being distributed in the UAE, and pointed out that a digital copy of the booklet can be acquired from the authority’s website www.gcaa.gov.ae.

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