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UAE drone enthusiasts appeal to fellow operators to follow new rules

January 24, 2022
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Authorities have banned the use of drones in the country in all air and sail spots

Following the UAE's Ministry of Interior's (MoI) decision to ban drones in the country, drone operators, enthusiasts, and professionals have been advised to follow the country's new rule for all residents' safety and security.

With effect from January 22, the Ministry stopped all flying operations for owners, practitioners and enthusiasts of drones and light sports aircraft. This included air and sail spots.

The Ministry's decision follows the misuse spotted recently for not limiting the use of drones to the areas identified to ensure the safety of lives and property of the residents. Companies that have work contracts or commercial or advertising projects that rely on filing and using drones must have the permits to carry out their work.

In line with the policies of the government, some venues in the country have also banned the use of drones for events coverage.

Recently, drones were used by the Yemeni rebel group Houthi in the attack against the civilian facilities in the country, damaging oil facilities, killing three people and injuring six others.

On Saturday, a Premier League match in the UK was halted for some time after a drone was spotted hovering above the stadium. The players returned to the dressing rooms until the drone was cleared from the area.

We have to respect the laws of the country. For new technologies, the authorities have to do a full study to make sure that everything is safe from various aspects,' said Ashish Panjabi, chief operating officer at Jacky's Business Solution.

He said drones are being used in various fields in the UAE such as farming, logistics, photography and others.

'In everything, we need to see the pros and cons – how everything falls out at the end of the day. Are people operating drones safely? We are in a society where there is are privacy concerns. Would anyone be comfortable with drones flying over their garden? Of course not. So all sorts of issues come up in this case. As a society, we work our way through and we hope there will be a solution for everyone and people respect that.'

Chandan Sojitra, a professional photographer and videographer, said it's a big decision by the authorities, but the safety and security of the residents should be at the front of everyone's mind.

'There are so many drones that people have bought it. Many have been brought from outside. Moving forward, to prevent the misuse of drones, it's important to make it mandatory to register them before they're sold in the market. It would help prevent the ban again because banning them causes a lot of disruption for everyone, especially businesses relying on them,' added Sojitra.

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