New European rules on Drones:
Since on 31 December 2020 apply common rules drones in the countries of the European Union, Liechtenstein and Norway, which have been defined on the basis of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/945 and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/947.
EASA has developed common European rules to facilitate drone operations and a level playing field for all UAS operators within the European Union. With the new rules, UAS operators can seamlessly perform drone operations when travelling within the EU or when developing their drone business in Europe. The rules described are based on an operational risk assessment and balance the obligations of drone manufacturers and operators in terms of safety, privacy, environment, noise abatement and security.
Unmanned Aircraft Operations are divided into three main categories:
- Open Category - is a low risk category, this means that you don’t need to make a declaration or obtain permission from the Civil Aviation Authority. In this category, operations can be performed within the visual line of sight the pilot or with the assistance of an observer (VLOS), with drones weighing less than 25 kg at a distance of no more than 120 metres from the nearest point of the ground surface. Registration with the CAA system is required for UAS operators who have drones weighing more than 250g or are equipped with a sensor for data collection (e.g. a camera). You can find more information about the open category HERE.
- Specific Category - is intended for operations of medium risk, whose flight parameters go beyond the "open" category. Performing the operation will require verification and, in some cases, approval of the Civil Aviation Authority. When performing specific category operations, UAS operators must be registered in the CAA system. The specific category may be used for UAS operations after meeting the selected option:
- declaration of Standard Scenario (STS) or National Standard Scenario (NSTS) operation;
- to receive authorization for specific category operations;
- obtaining LUC certificate.
You can find more information about the specific category HERE.
- Certified Category - is a high risk category, operations require UAS certification under Regulation (EU) 2019/945. Certification of the operator and the obtaining of a license by the pilot of the UAS may also be required, as appropriate, based on a risk assessment by the competent authority. Operations are classified in the certified category only if the following conditions are met:
- a) over assemblies of people;
- b) involves the carriage of passengers;
(c)involves the carriage of dangerous goods which, in the event of an accident, may pose a high risk to third parties.
Registration of Unmanned Aircraft Systems Operators
Registration is free and available HERE.
Who must register:
- UAS operators who are operating in the "open" category with drones:
(a) that have an MTOM of 250 g or more, or that are capable of imparting kinetic energy of more than 80 joules to a human in the event of impact;
(b) which are equipped with a sensor capable of collecting personal data (e.g. a camera), unless the aircraft complies with Directive 2009/48/EC (toys).
- UAS operators if they are operating in the "specific" category regardless of the mass of the drone.
Conditions for registration in the drones.ulc.gov.pl system:
- The pilot has to be at least 16 years old.
- An operator registers in our system if their place of residence is Poland or it is their main place of business.
- UAS operators who are registered in another EU or EFTA country and wish to undergo training in Poland may create an account in the operator registration system by providing their operator number from another EU or EFTA country.
- UAS operators from non-EU and EFTA countries may register in our CAA system (this also applies to Iceland and Switzerland) if they intend to perform their first operation in Poland.
- An operator may not be registered in more than one Member State.
Training and exams
Anyone wishing to fly a drone with a mass of 250g or more before flying must complete an online training course and pass an online test to prove they have acquired the required knowledge, these are free and available on the CAA system. Pilot qualifications are valid for 5 years. The exception is for those with valid UAVO qualification certificates, they do not need to undergo the training but must convert their UAVO certificate of qualifications by the 31 December 2021.
The online exam for A1/A3 subcategory consists of 40 multiple-choice questions, to pass the test you must get 75% correct answers.
Competencies for open categories:
- A1 and A3 - online training and test;
- A2 - online training and test, completing a self-practical training, passing an additional paid theoretical exam conducted by an entity. The list of entities is available HERE.
Competencies for the specific category:
Pilots who want to operate in the specific category must undergo training and pass an exams conducted by an entity. A list of entities is available HERE.
IMPORTANT: UAS operators registered in another EU country must register in the CAA system with their operator number before training.
Geographical Zones and Flight Declaration Applications
The Polish Air Navigation Services Agency is the institution authorized to designate geographical zones. You can find information about geo-zones HERE.
IMPORTANT: Each UAS flight in Polish airspace should be conducted after informing PANSA about the intention of the flight via teleinformatic system defined by the agency. This means that every UAS flight should be preceded by a check-in in DroneRadar application.
The UAS operator is fully responsible for the planned operation and before the operation it is required to check airspace availability (by entering parameters of the planned flight) via DroneRadar application or PANSA website. In some cases the consent of the airspace (or site) manager may be required.
Currently, liability insurance for USA operators with drones weighing less than 20 kg is voluntary. The Civil Aviation Authority recommends that each operator has insurance.
Informational campaign „Miej drony pod kontrolą”
Frequently asked questions HERE
For more information, visit the EASA website