Bill regulating ownership, operation of drones filed at Senate
MANILA, Philippines — A bill eyeing to regulate private individuals’ ownership and operation of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles has been filed at the Senate.
Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III’s Senate Bill 1098 wants to penalize individuals unauthorized to own or use drones either for recreational or commercial purposes.
American multinational package delivery and supply chain management United Parcel Service (UPS) was recently granted approval by the Federal Aviation Administration to operate a “drone airline.”
In a statement Friday, Pimentel said this ubiquity comes the need for regulation since “the same drones that are used for recreational and commercial purposes might be exploited by terrorists, used to violate rights, or could pose a hazard to aircraft.”
He also cited the drone attacks claimed by Yemen’s Houthi rebels that struck two key oil installations inside Saudi Arabia which damaged facilities and raised the risk of disruption in world oil supplies.
The bill authorizes the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) to classify drones into types and prohibit its use whether for hobbyist or commercial use in any parts of the Philippines.
Under the bill, only a registered commercial drone owner may apply for a permit to operate, which shall be issued periodically only upon proof that the owner qualifies for a radio operator’s certificate of proficiency; has been awarded a passing rating in an aviation license theory examination; has completed a training course in the operation of the type of drone that will be operated; has at least five hours of experience operating drones outside of controlled airspace; has valid insurance over the drone; and has not incurred any violations for drone ownership or use in the five years immediately preceding an application for permit.
Operating a drone without a permit will result in payment of a fine between P50,000 to P100,000 while violations of general safety regulations and restrictions on drone usage shall result in a fine between P100,000 and P500,000. /muf