You can get fined a whopping $25K for not following drone regulations in B.C.

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drone regulations
man flying drone / Shutterstock

While remotely piloted aircraft systems are capable of capturing breathtaking footage, not everyone is aware that Canada has strict drone regulations.

What’s more, not every drone pilot is aware that breaking one of these rules may come with a steep fine – or worse – jail time.

The Government of Canada has outlined a number of new regulations for drones, and they apply to all drones between 250 grams and 25 kilograms that are operated within the drone pilot’s visual-line-of-sight, regardless of whether the drone is flown for fun, work or research.

“All drone pilots are also subject to the Criminal Code as well as all provincial, territorial, and municipal laws governing areas such as privacy and trespassing. Endangering the safety of an aircraft is a serious offence,” reads the release.

“Anyone who violates the regulations could be subject to additional fines of up to $25,000 and/or prison. This applies to drones of any size used for any purpose.”

Drone pilots may face stiff fines and jail time for:
  • putting aircraft and people at risk
  • flying without a drone pilot certificate
  • flying unmarked or unregistered drones

In addition, the new rules dictate that consuming alcohol within 12 hours of being on a drone flight crew is strictly prohibited.

As a result, Transport Canada has developed an improved, user-friendly website with information on the new regulations and helpful tools for all drone pilots.

Using this guide allows drone pilots to safely navigate the world of remotely piloted aircraft systems without putting anyone in danger, as well as avoiding hefty penalties – a win-win.