Choosing the right drone
Choosing the right drone
When buying a drone, it’s important to choose the right one for you. That means selecting a drone that is safe enough to do what you want to do with it. We developed a Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) Safety Assurance rating system to help with this.
About the RPAS Safety Assurance
The RPAS Safety Assurance tells users the safety limits of the drone they are using. You must operate your drone within the limits outlined in the RPAS Safety Assurance declared by the drone manufacturer. Manufacturers can self-declare to Transport Canada that specific models of drones meet the requirements for advanced operations.
Drone safety requirements for basic operations
Basic operations pose less of a risk to people and aircraft. To conduct basic operations your drone does not need to have an RPAS Safety Assurance.
Drone safety requirements for advanced operations
Advanced operations pose a higher risk to people and aircraft. They include operations near people, over people and in controlled airspace.
A drone must meet the relevant RPAS Safety Assurance requirements to conduct advanced operations. If a drone does not meet the requirements, then the rules for basic operations apply instead. For example, flying over bystanders is an advanced operation. A drone that does not meet the relevant RPAS Safety Assurance requirements can still be flown, but not over bystanders.
A drone may be approved for some advanced operations but not others. For example, a drone may be allowed to operate less than 30 metres (100 feet) from bystanders but not over them. Meeting the RPAS Safety Assurance for one advanced operation does not make the drone fit for all of them.
Drones approved for advanced operations
The table below lists drone manufacturers and models rated to be approved for certain advanced operations.
Drones are listed only if they have an RPAS Safety Assurance declaration submitted by their manufacturer. If your drone isn’t listed, the manufacturer may have yet to submit the declaration. You’ll be issued a new registration certificate if the declaration is submitted. Contact your drone’s manufacturer to ask if a declaration will be submitted.
Categories of advanced operations:
- Controlled airspace – operations in which the drone will fly within the airspace controlled by air traffic control (Class A-F)
- Near people – operations in which the drone will fly within 30 metres (100 feet) and 5 metres (16.4 feet) of any person not associated with the operation
- Over people – operations in which the drone will fly within 5 metres (16.4 feet) or directly over any person not associated with the operation