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Drone owners: register today or face £1,000 fine

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Drone owners have until the end of today to register with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) – or risk a £1,000 fine.

Anyone operating a drone or model aircraft that weighs between 250g and 20kg must register with the aviation authority. Registration costs £9 a year.

From 30th November, UK drone users who fail to provide proof of registration when asked by the police will be subject to a £1,000 fine.

The CAA estimates there are approximately 90,000 drone users in the UK. So far, more than 40,000 have already complied, but tens of thousands of drone users are yet to register.

In addition, all drone operators – both adults and children – must pass an online test to get a flyer ID.

There’s no need to register if your drone is less than 250g, or you will only fly it indoors or in a securely netted area.

The CAA has also launched Drones Reunited, a platform to help recover the thousands of drones lost in the UK each year.

Research reveals that over a quarter of drone owners have lost a drone – with more than half of misplaced drones going missing due to battery loss, poor signal, or a technology failure. But in a quarter of cases it’s down to pilot error.

Jonathan Nicholson, of the CAA, said: “UK drone laws are changing and it’s vital that drone users – whether they fly regularly or not – are aware of how the drone registration scheme will affect them.

“Registration becomes law from the 30th November. If you are caught flying a drone from then, and unable to present proof of registration, you could be hit with a £1,000 fine. The online registration system has been designed to be as intuitive and accessible as possible, meaning those that need to register online can do so easily by the deadline.”

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