Updated UAV Exemptions Overview

On Dec 21 2016 Transport Canada released new updated Guidance Material for Operating Unmanned Air Vehicle Systems under an Exemption in Advisory Circular AC 600-004, which can be found here – https://www.tc.gc.ca/media/documents/ca-opssvs/AC-600-004.pdf

The following provides a summary overview of the key elements of the new exemptions.  For full details always reference the Transport Canada document noted above.

EXEMPTION REQUIREMENTS FOR UAVS 1KG OR LESS

  • Maximum take-off weight of 1 kilogram or less
  • Operated within visual line-of-sight.
  • Not operate the UAV further than one-quarter (¼) nautical mile from the location from which the pilot is operating the UAV.
  • Minimum of 18 years of age, or be at least 16 years of age and conducting research under the supervision of an academic institution.
  • Have no less than $100,000 in liability insurance coverage pertaining to the operation of the UAV system.
  • Not use a first person view device.
  • Operate no more than one UAV at any one time.
  • Below 300 feet above ground level (AGL).
  • Only operate a UAV in Class G airspace.
  • During daylight hours.
  • Not operate a UAV within or over a forest fire area, or over any area that is located within five nautical miles of a forest fire area.
  • At least five (5) nautical miles away from the centre of any aerodrome.
  • At least three (3) nautical miles away from the centre of any heliport.
  • Not operate a UAV over or within a built up area.
  • Lateral distance of at least 100 feet away from any building, structure, vehicle, vessel, animal or person unless: (a) The building, structure, vehicle, vessel or animal is the subject of the aerial work; and (b) Only persons inherent to the operation are present.
  • Not operate a UAV over or within an open-air assembly of persons.
  • Under visual meteorological conditions, clear of cloud with not less than two (2) statute miles ground visibility.
  • The pilot have the appropriate knowledge, training on the UAV system and qualifications for the area and type of operation.
  • Prior to the commencement of operations, notify the Minister, in writing.

EXEMPTION REQUIREMENTS FOR UAVS EXCEEDING 1KG UP TO 25KG

  • Maximum take-off weight of 25 kilogram or less
  • Operated within visual line-of-sight.
  • Not operate the UAV further than one-half (½) nautical mile from the location from which the pilot is operating the UAV.
  • Minimum of 18 years of age, or be at least 16 years of age and conducting research under the supervision of an academic institution.
  • Have no less than $100,000 in liability insurance coverage pertaining to the operation of the UAV system.
  • Not use a first person view device.
  • Operate no more than one UAV at any one time.
  • Below 300 feet above ground level (AGL).
  • Only operate a UAV in Class G airspace.
  • During daylight hours.
  • Not operate a UAV within or over a forest fire area, or over any area that is located within five nautical miles of a forest fire area.
  • At least five (5) nautical miles away from the centre of any aerodrome.
  • At least three (3) nautical miles away from the centre of any heliport.
  • Operate a UAV at least three (3) nautical miles away from a built-up area.
  • Lateral distance of at least 500 feet away from any building, structure, vehicle, vessel, animal or person unless: (a) The building, structure, vehicle, vessel or animal is the subject of the aerial work; and (b) Only persons inherent to the operation are present.
  • Not operate a UAV over or within an open-air assembly of persons.
  • Under visual meteorological conditions, clear of cloud with not less than two (2) statute miles ground visibility.
  • The pilot successfully completed a pilot ground school program.
  • Prior to the commencement of operations, notify the Minister, in writing.

2 comments

  1. The “built-up” area restrictions are still not clear. In the up to 1 kg exemption it states not to operate over or within built-up areas, and at least 100 ft from building/structure unless the building is the subject of the aerial work. So if a building is the subject of the aerial work, can you fly within built-up areas if the building is part of a built-up area as defined?

    Similar question exists for the 1kg to 25kg exemption: 3 nautical miles from built-up areas and at least 500 ft from buildings/structures unless the building is the subject of the aerial work.

    So which is it? If you are inspecting the roof of a building that is part of a built-up area as defined, do you need an SFOC?

    Like

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