General

Apps for Nav Canada Chart & Flight Data

When it comes to drone use in Canada, an important element is proper planning and site survey is to ensure you know the airspace and what is around the location in terms of potential dangers or areas to watch, such as aerodromes, helipads.

While paper charts are a great source to have on hand, more and more in today’s world we prefer the convenience of electronic information, with numerous apps for mobile devices offering charts, NOTAMs, weather, checklists and other useful information in the palm of our hand.

There are many apps available, however not all use data from the official source of Nav Canada, and as such may not be 100% reliable or accurate, as they rely on third-party data, such as from the US or other free sources.

For the most reliable information, it is always best to use the official source – Nav Canada lists the distributors that use their data here for those looking for options:

https://www.navcanada.ca/EN/products-and-services/Pages/List-Distributors.aspx 

As with anything be sure to research before you buy to get the most reliable information possible.

 

Halifax Regional Municipality Drone By-Laws

The following outlines the Halifax Regional Municipality Drone By-Laws:

Unmanned Air Vehicles and Model Aircraft 8A
(1) No person shall operate an unmanned air vehicle or model aircraft from within the boundaries of a park except in the circumstances set out in subsection (2).
(2) A person may apply to operate an unmanned air vehicle or model aircraft from within the boundaries of a park on a form as prescribed by the Director.
“unmanned air vehicle” means a power-driven aircraft other than a model aircraft, that is designed to fly without a human operator on board;
“model aircraft” means an aircraft, the total weight of which does not exceed 35 kg (77.2 pounds), that is mechanically driven or launched into flight for recreational purposes and that is not designed to carry persons or other living creatures;
“Park” means any land, owned, leased, or controlled by the Region, designated or used as parkland or as a trail, including gardens, playgrounds, sports fields and beach areas;

Transport Canada Aeronautical Information Manual (TC AIM) RPAS Chapter

If you are looking to get some further details on Canadian drone regulations outside of the CARs Part IX, a great place to look is the newly released Transport Canada Aeronautical Information Manual (TC AIM) MARCH 26, 2020 RPA—REMOTELY PILOTED AIRCRAFT.

This new chapter was added to support operational needs and to be aligned with the new Part IX — Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems in the CARs.

https://www.tc.gc.ca/ca-publications/AIM_2020-1_E_RPA.pdf

Click to access AIM_2020-1_E_RPA.pdf

 

Canadian Sub 250g Drone Laws

One of the questions that seem to come up multiple times per day in the various Facebook groups is what regulations apply in Canada to drones like the DJI Mavic Mini and others that fall in the sub 250g category.

Transport Canada clarified this and other of the CARs Part IX RPAS regulations in the most recent AIM (Aeronautical Information Manual) with a new section specific to RPAS – https://www.tc.gc.ca/ca-publications/AIM_2020-1_E_RPA.pdf 

As noted:

Micro remotely piloted aircraft systems(mRPAS) are made up of a remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) weighing less than 250g and its control station. The weight of the control station is not factored in to the weight calculation when determining whether an RPAS is micro (< 250 g) or small (250 g to 25 kg). However, the weight of any payload carried, such as optional cameras, will be considered part of the weight.

Pilots of micro RPASs are not subject to Subpart 1 of Part IX of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARS), so they are not required to register their RPAs or obtain a certificate to fly them. However, they must adhere to CAR 900.06 and ensure they do not operate their RPA in such a reckless or negligent manner as to endanger or be likely to endanger aviation safety or the safety of any person. While there are no prescriptive elements of the regulation that inform the pilot how to accomplish this objective, there is an expectation that the pilot of a micro RPAS should use good judgment, identify potential hazards, and take all necessary steps to mitigate any risks associated with the operation. This should include having an understanding of the environment in which the RPA pilot is operating, with particular attention paid to the possibility of aircraft or people being in the same area

If CAR 601.04 – IFR or VFR Flight in Class F Special Use Restricted Airspace or Class F Special Use Advisory Airspace, 601.16 – Issuance of NOTAM for Forest Fire Aircraft Operating Restrictions, and 5.1 of the Aeronautics Act restrict the use of airspace to all “aircraft”, they therefore apply to micro RPAs as they are considered aircraft under the Aeronautics Act and CARs. For more information, see RAC 2.8.6 Class F Airspace in the TC AIM.

A pilot that is found to have created a hazard to either aviation safety or people on the ground is subject to an individual penalty of $1,000 and/or a corporate penalty of $5,000 (CAR 103, Schedule II)

As such drones in this category have a very limited set of restrictions, basically 900.06:

900.06 No person shall operate a remotely piloted aircraft system in such a reckless or negligent manner as to endanger or be likely to endanger aviation safety or the safety of any person.

In short:

  • No registration required
  • No pilot certificate required
  • No flight restrictions beyond Class F Restricted areas and any NOTAMs limiting all aircraft use including models that may be in effect

Basically, fly smart and don’t be an idiot.

Keep in mind that in addition to the TC regulations, other city and park bylaws may still apply even to micro drones, as well as other laws in the criminal code.

DJI Drones Meet New Transport Canada Requirements For Flight Near People

May 29, 2019 – DJI, the world’s leader in civilian drones and aerial imaging technology, is pleased to declare that nine of its models meet the new Transport Canada requirements taking effect June 1 for drone flight within 30 meters (100 feet) of people. The new declaration, along with DJI’s previously declared compliance with new requirements for drone flight in controlled airspace, allows DJI customers to use their preferred drones for a variety of safe, responsible and beneficial uses across Canada.

“DJI customers choose our drones because they know our longstanding history of making powerful, reliable and dependable aerial platforms, and we are proud to say they can continue using our products under the new Transport Canada system beginning June 1,” said Javier Caina, DJI Director of Technical Standards. “We have put months of effort into documenting our safety expectations, testing standards, reliability guidelines and other processes to comply with Transport Canada’s new requirements. Thanks to this effort, we are able to confirm that our customers can continue flying DJI drones in controlled airspace and near people when the new rules take effect.”

Transport Canada announced its new regulatory framework for certain types of advanced civilian drone operations in January, requiring the use of drones whose manufacturer has declared that its drones meet reliability and operational characteristics under a safety assurance framework. DJI drones that can be used near people and in controlled airspace are the M600 Series, M200 Series, M200 V2 Series, Inspire 2, Mavic 2 series, Mavic Pro, Mavic Air, Phantom 4 series and Spark. The new declaration is expected to soon be reflected in Transport Canada’s list of drones eligible for advanced operations at this link.

DJI has long set the standard for safe operations in the drone industry, pioneering a series of technological improvements and educational systems to help ensure drones retain their admirable safety record. Most recently, DJI released “Elevating Safety,” its 10-point plan for government and industry to work together on keeping the skies safe in the drone age. As part of this effort, DJI will install AirSense, which warns drone pilots of nearby airplanes and helicopters, in all new drone models weighing more than 250 grams launched after Jan. 1, 2020. DJI will also create a new warning system for drone pilots flying at extended distances, and create an internal Safety Standards Group to document technical expectations and study performance results. More details on these initiatives are available at dji.com/flysafe.

https://www.dji.com/newsroom/news/dji-drones-meet-new-transport-canada-requirements-for-flight-near-people