REGISTER YOUR DRONE OR FACE FINES FROM FAA

Hannah Ferguson

Dec, 24, 2015  |  Today's News

IL Corn wants to make farmers aware that the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has announced mandatory drone registration for small unmanned aircraft (UAS) weighing more than 0.55 pounds (250 grams) and less than 55 pounds (approx. 25 kilograms) including payloads such as on-board cameras. This includes the most commonly used drones in agricultural applications. The $5 registration fee is waived until January 16, 2016. Failure to register the drone can result in civil and criminal penalties. You must be able to provide proof of your registration at any time you're operating the drone. IL Corn supports responsible access and use of drones (Unmanned Aerial Systems UAS) for agricultural purposes at the discretion of farmers and landowners.

Register at www.faa.gov/uas/registration.

Registration is a statutory requirement that applies to all aircraft. Under this rule, any owner of a small UAS who has previously operated an unmanned aircraft exclusively as a model aircraft prior to December 21, 2015, must register no later than February 19, 2016. Owners of any other UAS purchased for use as a model aircraft after December 21, 2015 must register before the first flight outdoors. Owners may use either the paper-based process or the new streamlined, web-based system.  Owners using the new streamlined web-based system must be at least 13 years old to register.

Registrants will need to provide their name, home address and e-mail address. Upon completion of the registration process, the web application will generate a Certificate of Aircraft Registration/Proof of Ownership that will include a unique identification number for the UAS owner, which must be marked on the aircraft.

Owners using the model aircraft for hobby or recreation will only have to register once and may use the same identification number for all of their model UAS. The registration is valid for three years.

The normal registration fee is $5, but in an effort to encourage as many people as possible to register quickly, the FAA is waiving this fee for the first 30 days (from Dec. 21, 2015 to Jan 20, 2016).

Q: What is the penalty for failing to register?

A: Failure to register an aircraft may result in regulatory and criminal sanctions. The FAA may assess civil penalties up to $27,500. Criminal penalties include fines of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment for up to three years.

Q: Will an operator be required to have proof of registration while operating the UAS?

A: Yes. You will be required to have your FAA registration certificate in your possession when operating your unmanned aircraft.

Q. Why do I need to register?

A. Federal law requires aircraft registration. Registration helps us ensure safety – for you, others on the ground, and manned aircraft. UAS pose new security and privacy challenges and must be traceable in the event of an incident. It will also help enable the return of your UAS should it be lost.

The full rule can be viewed here.