Calls for tighter controls over flying drones

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A consultation which could see drones registered and larger fines for misuse has been welcomed by a group representing the views of rural landowners.

CLA East has welcomed the Government document as it expected to see a boom in sales over the festive period.

Irresponsible flying has sparked concerns regarding safety and landowners believe the current rules are not robust enough to ensure their privacy is maintained from drones fitted with HD cameras.

The CLA, which represents landowners, farmers and rural businesses, has already called on the European Aviation Safety Agency to tighten controls on privacy, data protection and future regulation. It says that it is now time for the Government to tackle these issues and introduce new legislation and guidance regarding the use of drones.

CLA East regional surveyor Tim Woodward said: “The use of drones both commercially and for recreation is growing fast.

“The potential for a wide range of industries, not least agriculture, is tremendously exciting, but we do need regulation to keep pace.”

Michael Kheng, who runs Lincolnshire-based CLA-member business Kurnia Aerial Photography, which uses drones to shoot aerial photography and video for various industries, including agriculture, says that it is a worry recreational users often get away with ignoring legislation while commercial operators conform to it.

The Government’s consultation on new drone safety closes on March 15.