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Sapphire Coast drone warning

Sapphire Coast drone flyers have been warned to stay well clear of aircraft operating into and out of Merimbula airport.

People who fly a drone in a way that causes a safety risk to an aircraft could face regulatory action from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

The warning comes after reports from Merimbula airport of drones being operated on the flight paths of aircraft.

Photographs on social media that are said to have been taken from drones in flight are at locations on the airport’s approach and departure paths.

The geography of the region means drones being operated from headlands under flight paths or in areas near the airport may cause a safety risk.

Drone flyers should stay well clear of any area where aircraft may fly overhead at a low altitude.

As a general rule drones should be flown more than five kilometres from airports and below 400 feet.

Aviation regulations strictly prohibit unmanned aircraft being flown in a manner that creates a hazard to an aircraft taking off from or approaching for landing at a runway of an aerodrome or aircraft landing area.

If a drone collided with an aircraft it could potentially create a serious safety risk.  Drones may also distract pilots while flying.

CASA’s rules for recreational have been compiled into a handy flyer.

Media contact:
Peter Gibson
Mobile: 0419 296 446
Email: peter.gibson@casa.gov.au
Ref: MR7315