HelicoMicro.com: Remote electronic signaling

Helicomicro.com, a reference and information site on drones has just published a practical article on remote electronic reporting of unmanned aircraft including drones, in which he interviewed us to go into more detail on the subject.

Remote electronic signaling: what to do in practice?

As you now know, drones weighing more than 800 grams must be equipped with a remote electronic reporting system, starting June 29, 2020. The goal is to allow law enforcement agencies to remotely interrogate a drone they know nothing about to find out its owner’s name, its heading, its speed, its take-off point, its height, etc. The subject has been covered many times on Helicomicro, but it can be confusing.

Here are the key points to remember...

Remote electronic reporting is required to operate a drone weighing more than 800 grams in France as of June 29, 2020.

  • aircraft weighing less than 800 grams at take-off are exempt
  • are exempted from this requirement for equipment used indoors.
  • are exempted the devices used on the FFAM and UFOLEP grounds (except for 36 of them).
  • are exempted the aircraft which take part in missions for the benefit of the State.
  • if the drone is registered on the AlphaTango platform of the DGAC before June 29, 2020, the remote electronic reporting is only required from December 29, 2020, which leaves 6 months of respite.

What to do in practice?

  • If your drone weighs less than 800 grams, there is no need for remote electronic reporting. You don’t do anything.
  • If your drone weighs more than 800 grams, go to the official website AlphaTango of the DGAC to register it if it is not already done – it is mandatory. Do it before Monday, June 29, 2020! Because in this case, the process exempts you from remote electronic reporting until December 29, 2020.
  • If you register a drone over 800 grams after June 29, 2020, you must install remote electronic reporting. Either via a software tool provided by the manufacturer – but as of today (June 27, 2020), none of them offer it. Or via a box to acquire and add yourself. The list of existing models can be found here.

What are the penalties?

What is the risk of not reporting electronically at a distance? The application decree of October 30, 2019 (Art. R. 20-29-7) indicates a 4th class contravention, i.e. a fixed fine of 135 €. However, it should be noted that the same decree indicates that the fines will not come into effect until November 1, 2020 (Article 4.2°). Therefore, you will not be ticketed for failure to remotely electronically report between June 29, 2020 and November 1, 2020.

Attention, that’s not all!

An additional penalty of confiscation of equipment may be imposed, according to the same decree (Art. R. 20-29-7). A failure to report electronically at a distance can therefore lead to the confiscation of the drone, and this as of June 29, 2020…

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