UAV Guidelines

 

Canada is still developing proper UAV aviation laws, they’ve set in place fairly restrictive temporary restrictions that require advanced setup to legally fly a UAV at events and venues (like weddings). I’ve compiled a short guideline on what Nata De Coco requires to ensure a safe and legal aerial video:

 

1) SFOC Request: To legally fly in a designated No Fly Zone (Which, currently, includes all of Vancouver and over 50% of the Greater Vancouver Area), we must request for a Special Flight Operations Certificate through Transit Canada, which will give us legal access to the airspace of any wedding venue the day-of. This process takes 2-3 weeks, a bit of research on our end, and the exemption will be specific to the date, time, and area of the requested venue.

 

2) Public safety: If the venue happens to be in a heavily trafficked public space (a boardwalk, busy park, etc) our SFOC requires us to field an additional ‘spotter’, a ground-crew who will aid in informing any member of the public not with us or the wedding party. If an event is occurring nearby the day of, we must inform the event’s management of our intended flight space.

 

3) Weather: Rain and winds stronger than 15 km/hour make flight conditions too dangerous for our UAV and for general safety and we may invalidate any planned flight. Our pre-site inspection on the day-of will determine if the weather is too poor to allow a UAV flight.

 

4) Unexpected airspace overrides: Transit Canada has ruled that all commercial UAV flights are considered aircraft, and at any time Transit Canada may deny any airspace activity, even if previously approved by a SFOC. This is mostly due to rare occasions like unexpected military or government VIP flights over the city.

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