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Drone owners must register with the FAA or face stiff penalties

By Shawn Knight
Dec 14, 2015
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  1. The Federal Aviation Administration on Monday announced that pilots of consumer drones weighing between 0.55 pounds and 55 pounds must register their aircraft with the agency by February 19, 2016.

    Those that have operated a drone before December 21, 2015, must register by the date above. Anyone purchasing a drone after December 21, 2015, must register it prior to its first outdoor flight.

    Registration can be completed using a paper-based system or online. Owners will normally have to pay a $5 fee although that's being waived for the first 30 days in an effort to encourage as many people as possible to do so in a timely manner.

    The new rules implement much of what the Registration Task Force recommended to the FAA last month.

    U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said unmanned aircraft enthusiasts are aviators and with that title comes a great deal of responsibility. Registration gives regulators the opportunity to work with users to operate their aircraft safely, Foxx said, adding that he's excited to welcome these new aviators into the culture of safety and responsibility that defines American innovation.

    Failure to register a drone can result in a civil penalty of up to $27,500, the FAA said. Criminal penalty for failure to register can include fines of up to $250,000 and / or up to three years behind bars.

    It's worth clarifying that the registration process only applies to recreational / hobby drone operators. Registration for commercial drone usage is expected sometime in the first half of next year.

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  2. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,673   +778

    While there are many cases where improper use of a drone could and has put others "at risk", creating such stiff fines seems more than a little overboard. Imagine the poor kid that gets his first drone for Christmas, rushes outside to try it out, crashes it on his neighbors roof, the one that dosen't like him and turns him in and now the poor child (and parents) are facing the possibility of such a huge fine for a first time offense. The law is certainly necessary, but the penalties need to have some flexibility too! Hell, most of us can remember stuff we did as kids that now days might be a felony ..... just not in the best interest of the citizen ......
     
  3. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,183   +528

    If we have to register it, then we might as well be allowed to use weapon attachments. :p
     
    Uncle Al and Panda218 like this.
  4. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,498   +2,051

    Registering of drones is the correct thing to do and a wise decision but owners must also take be made to take and pass a test before being allowed to operate a drone, it should be just like getting a drivers licence. People need to operate these things responsibly.
     
  5. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,186   +580

    The amounts above are *up to* that amount. They would only charge someone with the maximum if it deserves the maximum.
     
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,555   +2,898

    "It's worth clarifying that the registration process only applies to recreational / hobby drone operators. Registration for commercial drone usage is expected sometime in the first half of next year."

    This is what I don't get. Why is commercial license not required first or at least the same time? Commercial license have a greater need in being registered, yet residential (recreational / hobby) is being pushed first. This is so *** backwards!
     
    stewi0001, dms96960 and Uncle Al like this.
  7. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 910   +387

    Great...most likely will ALSO apply to people like me, RC plane/helicopter users too.
    We've been SAFELY flying these things since after WW2 and haven't hurt anyone.
    We fly in CONTROLLED areas, or out on the farm, but thanks to the stupidity of people,
    we get lumped in with the rest of them.
     
    Uncle Al and cliffordcooley like this.
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,555   +2,898

    "The Federal Aviation Administration on Monday announced that pilots of consumer drones weighing between 0.55 pounds and 55 pounds must register their aircraft with the agency by February 19, 2016."

    Another thing that bugs me is this sounds like each drone has to be registered. This means there will be a $5 fee for each device, that will solve nothing in the long run. Registration only serves to be a money grab for leaching law makers, when registration for the operator is all that is needed.
     
    dms96960 and Uncle Al like this.
  9. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,673   +778

    Hmmmmmm ...... Hunter / Killer drones ...... has a nice ring to it! Sounds like this could be used to keep that pesky neighbor kids drones at bay, eh? Nothing terribly dangerous but maybe something that could sport a nice sized blank round or WAIT!!! Let's get a bit more creative. How about Drone Jousting?!?!?! I've got some old dowel rods out in the work shop. A bit of color, perhaps a pennant or two and off we go! By Jeebes mate, I do believe you have spawned a new sport!!!!!!
     
    stewi0001 likes this.
  10. John Pombrio

    John Pombrio TS Rookie

    Does this go for R/C airplanes/boats/cars as well or is the FCC just targeting drones as it is getting so much press lately?
     
  11. John Pombrio

    John Pombrio TS Rookie

    My attitude as well. I still consider drones as a fad that will lead to a lot less sales once people get tired of them. Perhaps it is the video that is the draw? I have had R/C planes and cars and boats and they are all downstairs gathering dust.
     
    p51d007 likes this.
  12. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,183   +528

    let's get wielding!
     
  13. Emexrulsier

    Emexrulsier TS Guru Posts: 510   +45

    I don't know your laws but I presume radio controlled planes and helicopters have to be registered so why was something like this except at first?
     
  14. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 910   +387

    Most of the time, I just hook my transmitter up to the computer and "fly" on it. Don't have to get stuff out, clean up afterwards too.
    Where I live, we have about 3 good months a year. Otherwise it rains, too hot/cold or too windy.
     

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