To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will make an assessment of the potential effect of a drone collision with an emergency helicopter attending a scene in a built-up area.
9 March 2016
The Department for Transport is currently working with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to develop consistent, EU-wide safety rules for drones.
The Department and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) work with a wide range of industry partners across the aviation sector, (including manufacturers, airports, and operators), to ensure our understanding of potential hazards to aircraft remains up-to-date and mitigations effective.
This collaboration is also considering the need for other potential drone policies, such as geo-fencing. There are a number of drone models already sold in the UK with types of this technology installed and we are assessing the potential for solutions that could restrict drone operations around sensitive locations and key infrastructure.
The Government has undertaken analysis of the use of drones for criminal purposes, including the potential use of drones for terrorist purposes, and the impacts of their negligent use near sensitive locations, such as airports. This work is kept under review and is being used to inform research and testing to improve mitigation techniques and strategies.
Education of drone users is vital. The DfT is working with the CAA on raising awareness of responsible drone use. This includes the CAA’s ‘Drone Code’ safety awareness campaign and the issuing of safety leaflets at the point of sale.