EU publishes new rules for operating drones

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) published common rules for the use of drones within the EU. The rules aim to ensure a safe and secure way of using drones while enabling free circulation. The new rules include technical and operational requirements for drones. For example, the drones will have to be individually identifiable, to prevent past incidents such as the 2018 Gatwick and Heathrow airport shutdowns. In addition, in cases in which drones are equipped with sensors that collect personal data, the operator must be registered in order to protect people’s privacy and personal data. The new rules will replace existing rules in EU member states and will enter into force in the next 20 days, but they will be applicable in one year, to give the states and operators time to prepare and implement.