SA Drone Laws
For simplified information regarding South Africa's drone laws please refer to the CAA website.
In compliance with part 101 we recommend all clients read the information below:
RPA SALES AND RE-SALES LABELLING
On the sale or re-sale of any RPA, the seller must display and provide a notice, to notify the purchaser of the following information –
“Note: The operation of Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) is regulated in terms of the South African Civil Aviation Regulations.
Operations as a hobbyist are subject to the terms of Part 94, whereas private use is restricted in terms of regulation 101.01.4 of the Civil Aviation Regulations.
For private use –
the RPAS may only be used for an individual’s personal and private purposes where there is no commercial outcome, interest or gain;
the RPA may only be operated over property for which the operator has ownership or permission;
the RPAS can only be used in Restricted Visual Line of Sight which means within 500m of the pilot, and never to exceed the height of the highest obstacle within 300m of the pilot, during which the pilot can maintain direct unaided visual contact with the device to manage its flight and collision avoidance; and
the pilot must observe all statutory requirements relating to liability, privacy and any other laws enforceable by any other authorities.
For all other use –
the RPA must first be approved by the South African Civil Aviation Authority for use by way of an RPA Letter of Authority (RLA);
all RPAs must be registered by the South African Civil Aviation Authority prior to use;
an RPA may only be operated in terms of Part 101 of the South African Civil Aviation Regulations which includes specific requirements that the operator shall hold an RPA Pilot License; and”
Private operation - means the use of an RPA for an individual's personal and private purposes where there is no commercial outcome, interest or gain;
Restricted visual line-of-sight* - means an operation within 500 m of the remote pilot and below the height of the highest obstacle within 300 m of the RPA, which the remote pilot maintains direct unaided visual contact with the RPA to manage its flight and meet separation and collision avoidance responsibilities;
- It is the full responsibility of the remote pilot of the RPAS to fly his/her aircraft safely and not endanger safety of another aircraft, any person or property.
- The remote pilot must observe all statutory requirements relating to liability, privacy and any other laws enforceable by any other authorities.
Limitations and restrictions
Please adhere to the following for the safe operation of RPAS:
1. Private operations of RPAS shall be conducted:
a. only in R-VLOS2. Do not fly RPA:
b. with a Class 1A or 1B RPA (mass < 7 kg, Impact energy* < 15 kJ)
a. Near manned aircraft3. Do not fly RPA 50m or closer from:
b. 10 km or closer to an aerodrome (airport, helipad or airfield)
c. In controlled, restricted or prohibited
a. Any person or group of persons (like sport fields, road races, stadiums, schools, social events, etc.)4. Only fly RPA in daylight and clear weather conditions
b. Public road
c. Any property without permission from property owner