If you want to use a small unmanned aircraft or drone outside of the operating limits set out in the Air Navigation Order then
you will need Permission from the CAA, even if your activity is non-commercial.
Applications for this type of Permission are considered on a case by case basis.
This could include flying a device over a congested area, or within 50m of a building.
The Air Navigation Order defines a congested area as being 'any area of a city, town or settlement which is
substantially used for residential, industrial, commercial or recreational purposes'.
In order to ensure that sufficient safety measures have been put in place, we will need you to demonstrate that they
have taken the necessary steps to ensure their drone will not endanger people, property or aircraft. This may be as
simple as preparing a safety case or a risk assessment for a one-off flight.
An individual or organisation that would like to conduct regular flights with their drone, however, will probably
need to submit an operating manual to the CAA for a permanent approval. This will allow greater freedom to operate
continuously without the need to seek ad hoc approvals.
This type of Permission could be of use to:
As with a Permission to carry out a commercial operation, the CAA will need to be assured of the competence of the
person who will be flying the device. The ‘pilot’ therefore will probably need to undergo an assessment process with
one of the approved National Qualified Entities.
The NQE can help you develop your operations manual to submit to the CAA, but you are free to use this operations manual
If you are unsure whether you need a Permission from the CAA and would like some advice before contacting an NQE
email us at UAVenquiries@caa.co.uk.
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