FAA sets out official drone regulations with Feb. 19 registration deadline

Posted:
in General Discussion edited December 2015
All drones between 0.55 and 50 pounds must be registered by Feb. 19, 2016, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced on Monday.




The fee will normally be $5, but until Jan. 20 that money is being refunded in order to encourage sign-ups. People will need to submit information including their name, home address, and email address, after which they'll receive a Certificate of Aircraft Registration/Proof of Ownership online with a special identification number. That number must be marked on a drone in case it's retrieved.

Registrations will only technically open up on Dec. 21, but people can submit information now in order to speed up the process. Web-based submissions, at least, are being restricted to people aged 13 or older.

After the February deadline, penalties will potentially be severe. Civil fines will range up to $27,500, and criminal penalties will scale up to $250,000 and as much as three years in prison.

The current registration scheme covers only general civilian use of drones, not commercial drone operations. The FAA said it's preparing a commercial online registration system for spring 2016.

Drones have proven a thorny issue for the FAA, with the organization trying to strike a balance between safety, security, privacy, and allowing their growth to continue. Some companies, most notably Amazon, have been waiting on the FAA to cement commercial rules so they can begin aerial delivery services.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
  • Reply 2 of 25
    dachardachar Posts: 330member
    It will be interesting to know how this will be Ppliced and what proof will be required to enforce.
  • Reply 3 of 25
    ktappektappe Posts: 759member
    Watch manufacturers fall over themselves to produce drones weighing .54 pounds...
  • Reply 4 of 25
    icoco3icoco3 Posts: 1,458member
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
    Can you expound further on this thought?
  • Reply 5 of 25
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,419member
    dachar said:
    It will be interesting to know how this will be Ppliced and what proof will be required to enforce.
    I think if one is in a populated area and a cop sees you flying a drone, s/he is likely to walk over and ask to see the license and to look on the drone to see if the registration # is marked on it.   I think after the paranoia about drones dies down (if indeed it ever does), they won't bother as much unless they're looking to give out tickets because they haven't met their quota.    The article above isn't clear as to whether you must carry the actual license with you when flying. 

    I've seen cops give tickets to a skateboarder who went through a light and I once saw a cop give a ticket to a 13-year-old who was riding their bike on the sidewalk, so I'm pretty sure they'll go after drone users (not that I've seen many people using one, not even in the park).  
    edited December 2015
  • Reply 6 of 25
    You will have to carry the registration with the "drone", but, you can let someone else use it with your registration.
    If I call my quad(s) a quad and not a drone, am I exempt? How about an R/C airplane? Are all of those over 1/2 a pound needing to be registered now? The FAA's site is not specific.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/registration/faqs/
    And for commercial use? Still foggy if they even have jurisdiction.

    edited December 2015
  • Reply 7 of 25
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    icoco3 said:
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
    Can you expound further on this thought?
    I doubt it: the FAA is required by law to regulate airspace usage and unmanned aircraft aren't excluded.Hmm: quite the opposite in point of fact;
    "

    (1) COMPREHENSIVE PLAN.—Not later than 270 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Transpor- tation, in consultation with representatives of the aviation in- dustry, Federal agencies that employ unmanned aircraft sys- tems technology in the national airspace system, and the un- manned aircraft systems industry, shall develop a comprehen- sive plan to safely accelerate the integration of civil unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system.

    (2) CONTENTS OF PLAN.—The plan required under para- graph (1) shall contain, at a minimum, recommendations or projections on—

    (A) the rulemaking to be conducted under subsection (b), with specific recommendations on how the rulemaking will—

    (i) define the acceptable standards for operation and certification of civil unmanned aircraft systems;

    (ii) ensure that any civil unmanned aircraft system includes a sense and avoid capability; and

    (iii) establish standards and requirements for the operator and pilot of a civil unmanned aircraft system, including standards and requirements for registration and licensing;

    (B) the best methods to enhance the technologies and subsystems necessary to achieve the safe and routine oper- ation of civil unmanned aircraft systems in the national airspace system;

    (C) a phased-in approach to the integration of civil un- manned aircraft systems into the national airspace system; (D) a timeline for the phased-in approach described

    under subparagraph (C);
    (E) creation of a safe
    (F) airspace designation for cooperative manned and

    unmanned flight operations in the national airspace sys- tem;

    (G) establishment of a process to develop certification, flight standards, and air traffic requirements for civil un- manned aircraft systems at test ranges where such systems are subject to testing;

    (H) the best methods to ensure the safe operation of civil unmanned aircraft systems and public unmanned air- craft systems simultaneously in the national airspace sys- tem; and

    (I) incorporation of the plan into the annual NextGen Implementation Plan document (or any successor docu- ment) of the Federal Aviation Administration."

    Page 63 onward:

    https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-112hrpt381/pdf/CRPT-112hrpt381.pdf


    Oh and due to "(2) flown within visual line of sight of the person operating the aircraft; and.." "Model aircraft" and autonomous unmanned aircraft are clearly two different items, not to mention the "community based organization reference". 


    But that there will be lawsuits I've no doubt at all. LOL


    edited December 2015
  • Reply 8 of 25
    wovelwovel Posts: 956member
    You will have to carry the registration with the "drone", but, you can let someone else use it with your registration.
    If I call my quad(s) a quad and not a drone, am I exempt? How about an R/C airplane? Are all of those over 1/2 a pound needing to be registered now? The FAA's site is not specific.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/registration/faqs/
    And for commercial use? Still foggy if they even have jurisdiction.

    The FAQ is pretty specific in the FAQ you linked.  Any thing that flys, has a control system, and weighs more than .55 lbs must be registered.  Business users and people with UAS weighing over 55 lbs (that's pretty big) must continue to use the paper forms. You must have the registration with you when operating.

    People who think the FAA can't do this are confused.  They are required to do it by law.
  • Reply 9 of 25
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,937member
    There are literally millions of drone and r/c plane pilots in the country.  They are going to get them all registered by Feb 19th?  LOL.  
    tallest skil
  • Reply 10 of 25
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    wovel said:
    You will have to carry the registration with the "drone", but, you can let someone else use it with your registration.
    If I call my quad(s) a quad and not a drone, am I exempt? How about an R/C airplane? Are all of those over 1/2 a pound needing to be registered now? The FAA's site is not specific.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/registration/faqs/
    And for commercial use? Still foggy if they even have jurisdiction.

    The FAQ is pretty specific in the FAQ you linked.  Any thing that flys, has a control system, and weighs more than .55 lbs must be registered.  Business users and people with UAS weighing over 55 lbs (that's pretty big) must continue to use the paper forms. You must have the registration with you when operating.

    People who think the FAA can't do this are confused.  They are required to do it by law.
    And they specifically address their legal foundation on page 11 and onward of the regulation: http://www.faa.gov/news/updates/media/20151213_IFR.pdf

    "The Secretary and the Administrator recently affirmed that all unmanned aircraft, including model aircraft, are aircraft consistent with congressional direction in Title III, Subtitle B of Public Law 112-95 and the existing definition of aircraft in title 49 of the United States Code. 49 U.S.C. 40102. As such, in accordance with 49 U.S.C 44101(a) and as further prescribed in 14 CFR part 47, registration is required prior to operation. See 80 FR 63912, 63913 (October 22, 2015). Aircraft registration is necessary to ensure personal accountability among all users of the NAS. See id." 
  • Reply 11 of 25
    icoco3 said:
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
    Can you expound further on this thought?
    Read the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, 112-95 see section 336. 

    SEC. 336. SPECIAL RULE FOR MODEL AIRCRAFT.

    (a) IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law relating to the incorporation of unma
    nned aircraft systems into Federal Aviation Administration plans and policies, including this subtitle, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration may not promulgate any rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft, or an aircraft being developed as a model aircraft, if—

  • Reply 12 of 25

    jfc1138 said:
    icoco3 said:
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
    Can you expound further on this thought?
    I doubt it
    Of Course I can. Do you know how the FAA works? Congress gives them the authority to make laws. You need to read the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 

    https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-112hrpt381/pdf/CRPT-112hrpt381.pdf

    Read 112-95  and see section 336.
  • Reply 13 of 25

    wovel said:
    You will have to carry the registration with the "drone", but, you can let someone else use it with your registration.
    If I call my quad(s) a quad and not a drone, am I exempt? How about an R/C airplane? Are all of those over 1/2 a pound needing to be registered now? The FAA's site is not specific.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/registration/faqs/
    And for commercial use? Still foggy if they even have jurisdiction.

    The FAQ is pretty specific in the FAQ you linked.  Any thing that flys, has a control system, and weighs more than .55 lbs must be registered.  Business users and people with UAS weighing over 55 lbs (that's pretty big) must continue to use the paper forms. You must have the registration with you when operating.

    People who think the FAA can't do this are confused.  They are required to do it by law.
    You are confused. Congress gives the FAA authority to create laws. If you read the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the FAA hasn't been given the authority to regulate or impose fines on drones. 
  • Reply 14 of 25

    wovel said:
    You will have to carry the registration with the "drone", but, you can let someone else use it with your registration.
    If I call my quad(s) a quad and not a drone, am I exempt? How about an R/C airplane? Are all of those over 1/2 a pound needing to be registered now? The FAA's site is not specific.
    http://www.faa.gov/uas/registration/faqs/
    And for commercial use? Still foggy if they even have jurisdiction.

    The FAQ is pretty specific in the FAQ you linked.  Any thing that flys, has a control system, and weighs more than .55 lbs must be registered.  Business users and people with UAS weighing over 55 lbs (that's pretty big) must continue to use the paper forms. You must have the registration with you when operating.

    People who think the FAA can't do this are confused.  They are required to do it by law.
    You are confused. Congress gives the FAA authority to create laws. If you read the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the FAA hasn't been given the authority to regulate or impose fines on drones. 
    And in fact are specifically prohibited from doing so!
  • Reply 15 of 25

    This is just another example of what happens when you let idiot play with a toy like these drones. Engineers have made them so easy to fly that the average person can now fly them. You know remote control planes and helicopters have been around for a long time and you did not need license or registration to fly them and some of them were fairly large. With a remote control plane it actually requires skills to use them so you did not destroy the plane. Today any idiot can fly a drone and what did they do fly them into people and did all kinds of stupid things. So the government had to step in and feel like they had to fix things.


  • Reply 16 of 25
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    This is silly and wasteful. .55 lbs is well within the toy range. Good old American Moral Panic. (Remember when it was chewing gum?)

    You know what else is dangerous to aircraft near the ground? Water balloons, catapults with rocks, baseballs, kites, and the toy R/C aircraft we've had for decades that have always been much harder to fly safely. What makes one toy copter a 'drone' (ooh, scary word!) and another not?

    And if someone really wants to fly irrespnsosibly, they're not going to display the number on the toy anyway.

    Regulate big unmanned aircraft. Not toys. Prosecute anyone who interferes with an airport.

    Don't make this more complex than it needs to be. The real problem: R/C toys have seen a surge in popularity due to cost/ease improvements. Anything that is popular will sometimes be used badly. But what, really, is the scale of this problem? How many incidents?

    Seems more reasonable to register skateboard owners. I bet they cause many more accidents. Rollerblades too. Also frisbees.
    edited December 2015 tallest skilfriedmudargonaut
  • Reply 17 of 25
    icoco3 said:
    I'm sure a lawsuit will be coming eventually. The FAA has no authority to enforce this. Technically, they are breaking the law under the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. 
    Can you expound further on this thought?


    it would be the model aircraft language in the 2012 Act:


    FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012
    Senate Bill, Section 607(g)
    ...exempts most model airplanes used for recreational or academic use from any UAS
    regulations established by the FAA
    Conference Committee Report
    Senate bill with modifications... Language including model aircraft for the purposes of sports,
    competitions and academic purposes is removed and replaced with ``hobby''. The modified
    section includes language requiring that the model aircraft must be operated in a manner that
    does not interfere with and gives way, to all manned aircraft. In addition, language that requires
    that model aircraft flown within five miles of an airport will give prior notification to the airport
    and the air traffic control (ATC), and that model aircraft that are flown consistently within five
    miles of the ATC will do so under standing agreements with the airports and ATC. Lastly,
    language is added that will ensure that nothing in this provision will interfere with the
    Administrator's authority to pursue enforcement action against persons operating model aircraft
    who endanger the safety of the national airspace system. In this section the term ``nationwide
    community-based organization'' is intended to mean a membership based association that
    represents the aeromodeling community within the United States; provides its members a
    comprehensive set of safety guidelines that underscores safe aeromodeling operations within the
    National Airspace System and the protection and safety of the general public on the ground;
    develops and maintains mutually supportive programming with educational institutions,
    government entities and other aviation associations; and acts as a liaison with government
    agencies as an advocate for its members
    .
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    SEC. 336. SPECIAL RULE FOR MODEL AIRCRAFT.
    (a)
    In General
    .--Notwithstanding any other provision of law relating to the incorporation of
    unmanned aircraft systems into Federal Aviation Administration plans and policies, including
    this subtitle, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration may not promulgate any
    rule or regulation regarding a model aircraft, or an aircraft being developed as a model aircraft,
    if--
    (1) the aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or recreational use;
    (2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and
    within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;
    (3) the aircraft is limited to not more than 55 pounds unless otherwise certified through a design,
    construction, inspection, flight test, and operational safety program administered by a
    community-based organization;
    (4) the aircraft is operated in a manner that does not interfere with and gives way to any manned
    aircraft; and
    (5) when flown within 5 miles of an airport, the operator of the aircraft provides the airport
    operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the
    airport) with prior notice of the operation (model aircraft operators flying from a permanent
    location within 5 miles of an airport should establish a mutually-agreed upon operating
    procedure with the airport operator and the airport air traffic control tower (when an air traffic
    facility is located at the airport)).
    (b)
    Statutory Construction
    .--Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the authority of
    the Administrator to pursue enforcement action against persons operating model aircraft who
    endanger the safety of the national airspace system.
    (c)
    Model Aircraft Defined
    .--In this section, the term ``model aircraft'' means an unmanned
    aircraft that is--
    (1) capable of sustained flight in the atmosphere;
    (2) flown within visual line of sight of the person operating the aircraft; and
    (3) flown for hobby or recreational purposes.


  • Reply 18 of 25
    All drones between 0.55 and 50 pounds must be registered by Feb. 19, 2016, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced on Monday.
    Good luck, motherfuckers. It isn’t happening.
  • Reply 19 of 25
    ipenipen Posts: 410member
    What does this have to do with Apple?  Is Apple going to come out with iDrone?
  • Reply 20 of 25
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,076member
    ipen said:
    What does this have to do with Apple?  Is Apple going to come out with iDrone?
    There are drones controllable through iOS apps....  FWIW
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