For the first time, unmanned aerial vehicle enthusiasts will be able to fly drones in Singapore’s first and only designated Pandan Reservoir flight area without applying for a permit.

Transport Minister S. Iswaran said on Sunday (July 17th) that the 16ha dedicated flight area aims to meet the needs of enthusiasts while ensuring public and aviation safety.

“The level of activity of Singapore’s unmanned aerial vehicle community has risen significantly, and its use for recreational purposes has increased significantly,” said Iswaran, increasing the number of unmanned aerial vehicles registered in Singapore. He said he was doing it.

“Air-safe and safe flight areas for the general public are an important consideration for us, especially in places like Singapore where the living environment is very dense. We can accommodate a variety of activities. Not only do we want to, but we want to make sure it’s done in a safe way. “

Examples of unmanned aerial vehicles include drones, radio-controlled aircraft, and remote-controlled kites.

The boundaries of the flight area of ​​the Pandan Reservoir waters are marked with yellow buoys and are at least 400 meters away from the nearest residential block for privacy reasons.

The user must take off and land the unmanned aerial vehicle within the grass area separated by the yellow standing flag.

Basic equipment such as tables and benches are provided for people to install aircraft in half-shaded areas.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), which opened the flight area on Sunday, said that previously those who wanted to install an unmanned aerial vehicle would have to install it with a lawn patch, especially on the ground. It’s wet.

CAAS says regular programs and community workshops will be held in the region to educate unmanned aerial vehicle enthusiasts on safe and responsible flight.

Unmanned aerial vehicles with a total weight of more than 250 g must be registered with CAAS before being operated by the user.

The flight area has come as an important recommendation by the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems Advisory Board, established in 2019, with the aim of reviewing and strengthening the regulatory framework for Singapore’s unmanned aerial vehicle systems.

The Pandan Reservoir flight area is open daily from 9 am to 6 pm.

The general public can participate in Telegram, Pandan Reservoir Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Flying Area Community Chat in the UA Flying Area to receive regular updates and important notifications about the site.

S Iswaran (center) and West Coast GRC MP Foo Mee Har (right) at the launch of the unmanned aerial vehicle flight area at the Pandan Reservoir on July 17, 2022. ST photo: GIN TAY

On Sunday, about 25 enthusiasts were invited to test the site and provide feedback to the authorities.

Iswaran said the pilot site will be used to assess the reaction from the unmanned aerial vehicle community and the general acceptance of neighbors and the general public.

“Once you gain experience and become widely accepted, you will know how to extend this to open areas, but it is important to do this first, succeed, and meet the needs and expectations of all stakeholders. “He said.

In general, enthusiasts can recreationally fly unmanned aerial vehicles in open areas within permitted flight areas and outside strict non-flight zones.

It is necessary to comply with rules and regulations such as applying for an activity permit as necessary, and unmanned aerial vehicles above 60 m above sea level are not allowed to fly.

Mr. Iswaran said that the number of crimes has increased in parallel with the growing interest in flying recreational drones, but most of the crimes were committed not because of malicious intent but because of lack of understanding or awareness of the rules. Said that.

This means that it is important to educate users and help them comply with the rules for promoting safe and responsible flight.

The advantage of having a designated flight area is the ecosystem it provides, Iswaran said.

“Here, enthusiasts, associations, CAAS and other stakeholders participate in the activity and promote a safe flight culture, which helps to better understand how it can evolve in Singapore. It helps, “he said.

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