Drone pilots will be asked to take safety test before flying

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Recreational drone pilots will now be asked to pass a ‘quiz’ before taking off, aviation officials have said.

The test, based on drone safety and Australian regulations associated with the new technology, has been developed by Chinese drone developer DJI, in conjunction with the Australian Civil Aviation and Safety Authority (CASA).

“It should reinforce to everyone who owns a drone that there are responsibilities that come with that and one of them is understanding the laws around flying drones,” CASA spokesperson Peter Gibson said.

“Most people who fly drones do so recreationally and they’re not required to have a pilot’s licence and there’s no registration system.”

The new test comes after a sharp rise in drone sales in Australia over the last year, with DJI also implementing the quiz in both the UK and the United States.

“The majority of our users are flying in a safe and responsible manner but this is just to make sure everyone understands the rules,” added Mr Gibson.

The quiz, which will consist of nine questions, will ensure that users understand updated Australian laws and regulations, including how close drones can fly to airports, buildings and people.

How does the test work?

For drone users, the quiz will be available as soon as you open up the drone app on your phone, allowing users to either skip the quiz, or complete it.

The quiz can only be skipped four times before requiring users to undertake the test, with the skip function put in place for emergency situations, according to the DJI. There is also no limit to how many times the quiz can be taken.

“We do not lock operators out of their drones. If they don’t pass the quiz, they just have to keep taking it until they get all the questions correct,” states DJI.

“Nevertheless, it is essential that everyone who flies a drone understands the rules and follows them.”

Drone users are encouraged to regularly visit CASA’s website for legal flight zones and regulation updates.

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