Taiwan to require drone operators to be licensed

183

TAIPEI (CNA) – Drone operators in Taiwan will need to pass an exam to obtain an operator certificate and will have to register with the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA), according to new drone regulations.

The new regulations under an amendment to the Civil Aviation Act passed by the Legislative Yuan last year will to come into effect in July, with mock exams to be held in May.

Under the regulations, registration of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) weighing 250 grams and over will become mandatory, so that government authorities can identify owners in the event of accidents.

Upon registration, owners will be issued with a set of registration codes that must be marked on their aircraft.

The revised bill also stipulates that a license will be required to operate drones weighing 1 kilogram and over.

Owners of drones equipped with a GPS navigation system and weighing 15 kg or more, or drones weighing 25 kg or over with no GPS, will have to take an additional physical examination to obtain operating permits.

In addition, the bill requires that drones can only be flown in daylight hours and must stay below 400 feet above ground level.

However, according to the Civil Aviation Act, organizations such as media outlets and schools may apply to the CAA for approval for exemption from the restrictions.

With the new drone regulations coming into force in July, the CAA will launch an app specifying restricted zones and where drone operators may legally fly.

By Wang Shu-fen and Chung Yu-chen