In aviation, you must always think safety first. In addition to respecting the Canadian Aviation Regulations, you must follow the rules in all acts and regulations—including the Criminal Code, as well as all municipal, provincial, and territorial laws regarding trespassing and privacy.If you think someone has committed a criminal offense, please contact your local police department.If you are concerned about the safe operation of an unmanned aircraft, report it to Transport Canada at [email protected]. Transport Canada regulates the use of all aircraft, manned and unmanned, to keep the public and our airspace safe.If an incident is reported to the department, one of our inspectors will verify that the operator followed the rules and used the drone safely. Local police may also verify if other laws were broken, including the Criminal Code and privacy laws. If you fly a drone for recreational purposes (for the fun of flying), it’s illegal to do anything that puts aviation safety at risk. The courts would decide on the penalty. Yes. Transport Canada is exploring changes to the regulations that will address the growing popularity and economic importance of drones and integrate them safely into Canadian airspace. The department published a Notice of Proposed Amendment that highlights several proposed changes, including new flight rules, aircraft marking and registration requirements, knowledge testing, minimum age limits, and pilot permits for certain UAV operators.The Canadian public will have the opportunity to provide comments to the proposed regulation when they are published in Canada Gazette. You may know them as “drones”, but the aviation community and Transport Canada use different terms.In Canada, our laws use two terms:
“Model aircraft,” which describes the devices usually used by hobbyists for recreational purposes.
“Unmanned Air Vehicle,” or UAV, which refers to unmanned aircraft more used for any non-recreational purposes (i.e. commercial, research and development, academia, first responders, etc).
Internationally the terms “unmanned aircraft system” (UAS) and “remotely piloted aircraft system” (RPAS) are used. The International Civil Aviation Organization uses “UAS” as a catch-all for all unmanned aircraft. Call it what you like – but Transport Canada expects you to operate it safely and legally.
Recreational use of a UAV is prohibited in national parks. The National Parks of Canada Aircraft Access Regulations prohibits aircraft landings and take-offs in national parks except by permission of the Superintendent for park management purposes or in emergencies. Please contact Parks Canada for more information. Rules for drones vary from one country to another. Always check the local aviation regulations before you fly in that country.
Model aircraft hobbyists that belong to a recognized association, such as the Model Aeronautics Association of Canada, have a proven track record of operating safely. Following the MAAC safety guidelines and practices is considered an acceptable way of ensuring you fly safely.