Germany Proposes Drone Registration

All drones that weigh more than 0.5 kg (1.1 lb) would be required to have a license plate that connects them to operator in case of an incident.

Anyone else see a trend brewing? The United States and Ireland both announced plans to implement a drone registration system, and now Germany is heading in that same direction.

Citing a lack of regulations and growing public safety concerns, the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure proposed all drones - commercial and hobbyist - that weigh more than 0.5 kg (1.1 lb) need to have a license plate that could help identify the operator. You can read the proposal here (text reads in German, so you might need to translate).

Germany is also looking to prohibit hobbyist flights over 100 meters (328 feet) and beyond the visual line of sight. As is here in the US, hobbyist flights in Germany are already prohibited over prisons, military facilities, crowds, and disaster zones, but the ministry is looking to add industrial facilities, power plants, federal roads and railroads to the restricted flight zones.

For commercial operators, Germany is looking to give regions the power to authorize flights beyond the visual line of site when it can be done safely. Commercial flyers will also need to pass a test demonstrating their flying skills and knowledge of the law.

Here is what Alexander Dobrindt, Germany’s Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, had to say (translated from German to English using Google Chrome):

Private drones are constantly increasing. This results in new potential hazards eg by collisions or crashes. I will therefore re-regulate the use of drones: drones are to be registered in future in order to identify the owner can. Drone flights in residential areas, on federal highways, railways, accident locations, areas of application of police or industrial installations are prohibited. For the operation of commercial air drones legal skills are required in the future.

The United States is developing a similar drone registration system. A 25-member task force comprised of drone manufacturers, aviation associations, retailers and other experts has recommended the mandatory drone registration be “simple and free” and be required for all drones that weigh more than 9 oz. Users will register by entering their name and address into a government-run website or mobile application. Users would have to attach a “legible” registration number to their drone. The task force has until Nov. 20 to submit its recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration, which hopes to have the registration system up and running by the holiday season.

Ireland hopes to have its new drone registration system up and running by Dec. 21, 2015, according to The Irish Times, and will require all drones that weigh more than 1 kilo (2.2 pounds) to be registered. The registration system, which also applies to model aircraft, has an accompanying app that will tell licensed drone users where they can and can’t fly.

[Source:] Hogan Lovells

About the Author

Steve Crowe · Steve Crowe is managing editor of Robotics Trends. Steve has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter.
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