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Flying drones and other unmanned aircraft

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Flying drones and other unmanned aircraft

Gisborne District Council allows the flying of drones or remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) over council-owned reserves and roads as defined in Part 101 of Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) rules(external link).

Where to fly your drone or RPAS 

You can fly drones and RPAS without a permit over council-owned land. As the operator you still need permission under the Privacy Act from any person on the land.  

If you want to fly over private property, you must contact the property owner for permission, this can be given verbally. If you can’t get their permission you need to contact the CAA. 

You are required to maintain ‘visual line of sight’ with the device and you must:

  • not do anything hazardous to persons, property and other aircraft
  • fly only in daylight
  • not fly your aircraft higher than 120 metres (400 feet) above ground level
  • not fly closer than 4km from any aerodrome unless permission from CAA is obtained first
  • when flying in controlled airspace, obtain an air traffic control clearance issued by Airways
  • have consent from anyone you want to fly above. If you can’t get their consent, you need permission from the CAA. Such as, if you:
    • fly over a cricket game, you need permission from the cricket association.
    • fly at the beach, you need permission from everyone on the beach. If you can’t do that, you need permission from the CAA. 

See the CAA rules on their website(external link) 

It’s also your responsibility and obligation to monitor and comply with all CAA rules. 

Complaints about drones or RPAS 

If a drone flies above your property without your permission and you feel it’s in breach of your privacy – contact the Civil Aviation Authority(external link) 

If there's an urgent risk to public safety, contact the police. 

4km radius of Gisborne airport

15 435 Flying Drones Unmanned Aircraft On In and Around Gisborne District Parks and Reserves 2 7