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FAA updates UAS compliance and enforcement guidance

US, October 22, 2014: The Federal Aviation Administration updated its compliance and enforcement guidance which details actions applicable to operators of unmanned aircraft systems violating the existing regulations for aeronautics and space.

The guidelines help determine whether the safety inspector should take administrative or legal enforcement action. For first-time, in case of inadvertent violations that pose a low safety risk (where the inspector determines compliance cannot be gained), the amended regulations states that warning notices or letters of correction would be a sufficient recourse. According to the updated rules, any violations that pose medium or high actual or potential risk or any repeated or intentional violations would warrant legal enforcement action.

FAA has also cautioned that certificate holders would be prone to tighter enforcement because of their knowledge of danger to the national airspace, and stringent action may be taken in addition to a civil penalty, especially for deliberate violations. The severity of the violation would result in minimum, moderate or maximum range fines. Penalties for this would range from $100 for small entities or individuals to $25,000 per violation for large businesses. Individuals in violation acting as pilots may owe from $500 minimum to $1,100 maximum per violation, and each flight can have multiple violations.

Source: AUVSI