Drone fliers warned
DRONE users are being warned not to fly near airports to avoid putting aircraft in danger.
As personal drones continue to soar in popularity, the Jandakot Airport Community Aviation Consulting Group (JACACG) is warning users to inform themselves about local restricted areas and the dangers of flying drones near airports.
JACACG chairman Steve Klomp said as drones became cheaper, more advanced and more able to reach the heights used by commercial aircraft, they posed greater risks to pilots who often could not see such small objects in the sky until it was too late.
He said drones were not allowed to intrude into aviation airspace and could not be used at or near an airport.
“The numbers of drones in use has exploded in recent times and their use is only going to increase,” he said.
“This is fine, in fact it is great, as long as they are not a danger to others, or to aircraft.
“They may be only a nuisance, holding up traffic or causing collision warning systems to activate, but on the other hand they can hit a propeller or be sucked into a jet engine.
“A drone colliding with an aircraft can be a catastrophe.”
Mr Klomp said the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) required some drone users to need a licence but many, including those flying on their own property, only needed to notify CASA of their plans.
“Locals have a responsibility to be informed about how and where they may operate a drone and if they need to be licensed to use their drone,” he said.
“A drone operator is ultimately responsible for its use so operators must be informed and operate within the bounds of the law.”
Members of the public or community associations affected by Jandakot Airport operations, or who have an interest in aviation, are invited to join the JACACG.
Visit www.jandakotairport.com.au/community/community-aviation-con-sultation-group for more information on joining.
Jandakot Airport Operations co-ordinator Jacqui Gill, JACACG chairman Steve Klomp and City of Cockburn strategic planning manager Andrew Trosic with a drone at the Jandakot airfield.