Documents obtained by the CBC indicate Transport Canada plans to introduce strict new rules in 2017 to govern recreational drone flyers.
Should the proposed rules become law, recreational flyers will be required to register their drone, pass a knowledge test and acquire liability insurance to be able to operate a drone in Canada.
Moreover, anyone operating a drone weighing more than 250 grams — essentially all but the smallest of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) — would be subject to the rules.
Transport Canada is also considering adding age adding an age restriction. Under the new rules, only individuals over the age of 16 would be allowed to operate a device over the 250 gram weight limit, while toy drones would be restricted to children over the age of 14.
“The proposed floor for very small UAVs is intended to minimize the risks to persons, based on the speed and potential lethality,” says the document.
The proposed rules come as a response to the recent growing popularity of consumer UAVs. In 2010, Transport Canada investigated just one incident involving a drone. By contrast, as of the start of September, the department looked into 82 different cases.