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Trial of drone delivery systems
Currently a delivery drone is able to transport small ‘just-in-time’ supplies to someone within about 10kms of the base station. This might include food, medicines, or even small items of hardware.
We have approved Unmanned Systems Australia to operate Wing drones in Bonython, a suburb in Canberra’s south. Unmanned Systems Australia is a licensed and certified drone operator.
They have been testing drone delivery with Wing in Australia over the past several years, refining their aircraft and systems.
They have satisfied us that their operation meets an acceptable level of safety. As a result, we have permitted Unmanned Systems Australia to operate over Bonython and in closer proximity to a person, than our regulations would normally permit.
As the safety regulator, the issue of privacy and noise is not in our remit.
The system is automated—however a licensed drone pilot is always at the helm.
Wing works within our current guidelines for commercial drone operators flying over 2kg and these approvals are aligned with regulations and in accordance with similar instruments issued to other operators.
Wing drones currently fly only during daylight hours. Flights are permitted in the following hours:
- Monday to Saturday from 07:00 to 20:00
- Sunday from 08:00 to 20:00.
While an accident is unlikely to occur, pilots will know instantly if any of their drones operate outside of a standard mission. If this happens, the operator will decide if the safest course of action is to the land the aircraft, rather than continue the flight.
In the unlikely event the drone encounters a problem, it is designed to automatically land very slowly. The aircraft are equipped with flashing strobe lights.
If you do have one land on your property, Unmanned Systems Australia has an emergency response plan which will despatch one of their own crew vehicles to site immediately. The safest thing you can do is simply to leave it alone until the operator is on site.
As the safety regulator, the issue of aircraft (drone) noise is not in our remit. Wing has included some information on the noise drones make on their website.
You are encouraged to contact Wing with questions about their privacy policies by emailing email@example.com. As the safety regulator, the issue of privacy is not in our remit.
If you are concerned about drones and your personal privacy, you can contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner for more information or telephone 1300 363 992. Before making a complaint to OAIC, you must complain directly to the agency or organisation. If they do not respond within 30 days, or you are dissatisfied with the response, you can then take your complaint to the OAIC.