The CAA have just published the following update, which is provided in full below:
The UK’s new Drone and Model Aircraft Registration and Education Scheme will go live on 5 November 2019 (please note that you cannot register before this date).
There will be two elements to the online system.
Anyone responsible for a drone or unmanned aircraft (including model aircraft) weighing between 250g and 20kg will need to register as an operator. The cost for this will be £9 renewable annually.
Anyone flying a drone or unmanned aircraft (including model aircraft) weighing between 250g and 20kg will need to take and pass an online education package. This is free and renewable every three years.
Both of these requirements become law on 30 November 2019.
From 5 November 2019 the system will be available at Register-drones.caa.co.uk
For holders of current CAA permissions or exemptions for drone operations (e.g. such as the permission related to commercial operations as required in ANO article 94(5)) and model flyers holding an achievement certificate issued by a UK model aircraft association with a CAA reviewed achievement scheme:
Remote pilots flying in accordance with a permission, exemption or operational authorisation (e.g. such as the permission related to commercial operations as required in ANO article 94(5)) that has been issued to a named UAS operator by the CAA will be exempt from having to undertake the online education training and test.
Similarly, where a UK model aircraft association already has an established and CAA reviewed ‘competency scheme’, members who hold an appropriate achievement certificate or award (such as the BMFA ‘A’ certificate) will also be exempt from having to undertake the online education training and test.
Any operators who are not covered under the conditions of a permission/exemption or do not hold a recognised association competency will need to complete the free online course.
To allow operators to demonstrate competence if challenged (for example by the police) the CAA will be issuing a formal exemption that can be used alongside existing permissions / achievements and any other relevant documents. This exemption will be in place until 30 June 2020, when new regulations are expected. We will be working with stakeholders in 2020 to put these into place.
For members of ARPAS-UK, British Model Flying Association (BMFA), Scottish Aeromodellers’ Association (SAA), Large Model Association (LMA) and FPV UK
Members will not need to register as an operator with the CAA system if they are a current member of these associations. With permission [of individual members], the associations will collect the registration fee from members directly and supply their data to the CAA. This will take place initially by 31 January 2020 and an exemption from the need to register will be put in place by 30 November to cover association members until then.
The associations will issue further detailed guidance to their members in due course. Please see www.arpas.co.uk, www.bmfa.org, www.fpvuk.org, www.largemodelassociation.com or www.saaweb.uk for further details.
Control line model aircraft flying
The CAA will be issuing an exemption meaning those flying control line model aircraft will not need to comply with the registration or education regulations.
ARPAS-UK and the BMFA have been working on behalf of their members, the other UK associations and the wider unmanned aircraft community to agree these changes with the DfT and the CAA since meeting with the Secretary of State for Transport on the 9th September.
David Phipps, BMFA CEO commented: we are grateful to the Secretary of State for Transport for his direct intervention in this matter which has allowed us to negotiate a more acceptable outcome for our community whilst enabling us to establish a much stronger relationship with the CAA and DfT in the process. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our members for their support of our campaign which was backed up by a significant number of MP’s, the wider aviation community, the APPG for General Aviation and our special advisers (Cliff Whittaker and Roger Hopkinson MBE). It is very much a case of ‘United we Achieve’.
Graham Brown, ARPAS-UK CEO commented: I think David has covered the points very well and ARPAS would like to add our thanks to all involved and in particular to the Secretary of State for Transport for his intervention. I would add that during the process of discussing DRES we have built on an already effective and collaborative relationship with the DfT and the CAA. We look forward to working with them on the challenges and opportunities ahead.