Authorities are reminding the community to keep out of controlled airspace after a man was issued an infringement for flying a drone at Mount Ainslie lookout.
After a member of the public reported a drone being flown illegally in the area, AFP officers attended the scene and interviewed a 28-year-old New South Wales man, who was on a brief visit to Canberra and did not realise he was flying in a restricted area.
The AFP referred the matter to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) who found there was no impact to airport operations on this occasion.
The man received an infringement and counselling notice was issued.
AFP Airport Police Commander Canberra Simon Henry stressed the seriousness of the incident, particularly given how close Mount Ainslie is to the airport.
“Our goal is to get passengers in and out of Canberra airport quickly and safely,” Superintendent Henry said.
“Flying drones in controlled airspace puts the safety of both Canberrans and our visitors at risk, and can lead to significant delays for travellers.
“It is your responsibility to know where you can and can’t fly, so please become familiar with the information and tools available to you.”
CASA spokesperson Peter Gibson said the drone safety rules protect people in the air and on the ground.
“The drone safety rules are simple and easy to follow – they’re designed to avoid hazards with other aircraft, people or property,” Mr Gibson said.
“This infringement should remind people not to fly drones within 5.5km from airports such as Canberra. It’s dangerous, and there can be serious consequences.”
Mr Gibson said CASA has produced a smartphone app illustrating where drones are not allowed to be flown. The Can I fly there? drone safety app reflects the standard operating conditions for those flying their drone recreationally or commercially.
For more on the rules around recreational drone use, click here.