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The 30m Rule

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Narrator, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. Narrator

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    The 30m (100ft) rule here in Australia may be similar to other places. Or it may not.

    The 30m rule is diagonal, not lateral.

    In a phone call to CASA the other day, I learned it's not what most think it is. I was always under the impression it was a lateral distance. I could be 300 ft high, but laterally I would still need to be 30m away from buildings, people and vehicles. Not so.

    According to the guy I spoke to, it's 30m diagonal or direct. In other words, if I was 31m directly above someone, then I would still be within the rules.

    He did caution of course. He said it's all about risk, and if it was a crowd of people then that risk would be substantially increased. Also, when a UAV malfunctions, it won't always just drop straight down. It reminded me of when my Phantom span off (probably a ESC issue) and hit the ground hard, about 10m away from where it lost control.
     
  2. Hughie

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    This is consistent with the UK CAA rules.

    They have a 150m rule for congested areas, which states that aircraft must not "fly over or within" 150m;
    whereas
    the 50m rule about staying away from structures, people etc just states that aircraft must not "fly within" 50m

    The clear contrast here is that the latter does not exclude flying over, and the only reasonable inference I can make is that it is OK to fly over such things as long as you are over 50m (and it is safe to do so of course).
     
  3. Narrator

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    Makes sense, Hughie.

    Just wondering what would be considered congested. Inner city? Outer suburban?

    Road rules here in Oz talk about "built up areas," and the expression has also been adopted in UAV discussions. A built up area is defined by street lighting. If the streets are lit, then it's "built-up." I guess that's because it's roughly synonymous with buildings and road use.
     
  4. Hughie

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    Great question, because the answer from the CAA is vague and unhelpful

    from paragraph 2 of http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/33/Informatio ... 014184.pdf ....

    So the next question is what is "substantial". They don't say :roll:
     
  5. Narrator

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    lol.. typical bureaucracy
     
  6. noiseboy72

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    Congested basically means anywhere where people are living, working or enjoying recreation.

    A Congested Area is not a fixed area, so flying over an empty recreation ground at 5am would be fine, but not at 8am, when there may be dog walkers and a football squad out training. Same would go for an industrial area at a weekend, where all the businesses are closed and very few people are about.

    The 150M rule only applies to camera equipped drones that record, so remove the camera or pop out the SD card and just use FPV and you can legitimatize fly - provided the flight is safe!

    I do think that most of the "uncertainty" is people wanting to interpret the rules to allow a little more latitude, as it is quite a limiting regulation if you do not have a permissive flying site.
     
  7. Hughie

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    Very true, and the devil as always, is in the detail :(
     
  8. Narrator

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    Is that a privacy thing?
     
  9. Hughie

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    My take on articles 166 (no camera) and 167 (camera) is that since both the 150m and 50m rules apply only to aircraft with a camera, you would assume that both are for privacy reasons.

    I have never understood why the 50m rule does not apply if you dont have camera. It seems a sensible rule,

    http://www.caa.co.uk/default.aspx?catid ... geid=16012
     
  10. hotstink626

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    So is this rule for everyone or do uav commercial pilots get exception as I saw a big arse octo flying over the suburbs today with a 5d attached to it probably filming for some sort of real estate reality show. In Melbourne Australia
     
  11. Narrator

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    hotsink, the 30m rule is Australian. (Just for clarity, what Hughie is telling us about is UK rules.)
    Here in Oz, CASA is pretty quick to give qualified operators a dispensation of the rules when it comes to film and TV, providing they have all the safety items in place. Apparently CASA, CAA, FAA and other regulators process applications quickly for film and TV, which is kind'a understandable.
     
  12. hotstink626

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    I understand the rule just can't get how its safe for a qualified operator to fly around over 10kgs of uav and camera over a built up area just missing tv antennas .? me and my Bro where in his back yard cooking a bbq looking up at it ... he said "what the fu3k" he was about to start hitting lemons at it with his tennis racquet ... :evil: lucky I stopped him and said thats about $10000 your about to smash lemons at .. and if you hit it its going to be one expensive lemonade stand :D ....