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Operating drones/RPAS from City parks

Man flying drone in field

The operation of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) including but not limited to drones and model aircraft in Australia is regulated by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). Once off the ground all RPAS must adhere to Civil Aviation Safety Regulations Part 101.

As the land owner, the City of Gold Coast (City) regulates the launching and landing of these aircraft from City land. You can launch and land your drone/RPAS aircraft in designated park areas if the following conditions are met:

  • You are flying for recreational purposes.
  • Your aircraft is electric and weighs no more than 2 kilograms.
  • You are flying between:
    • Monday to Saturday from 7am to 6pm
    • Sunday and public holidays from 8am to 6pm.
  • You keep your drone/RPAS within visual line of sight and fly no higher than 120 metres above the ground.
  • Your activities do not endanger, interfere with or cause nuisance to the park, park users or adjoining properties.
  • You keep your drone at least 30 metres away from other people.
  • You comply with all other Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s (CASA) regulations and safety rules.
  • You comply with Local Law No 9 (Parks and Reserves) 2008 requirements at all times.

The CASA rules for flying RPAS recreationally are detailed on the CASA droneflyer website. These rules are designed to protect other people both in the air and on the ground, manned aircraft and infrastructure. These rules must be followed at all times. Launching, landing and operating RPAS from City land is a restricted activity.

A trial designated area for RPAS use is provided at Prairie Reserve, Prairie Road, Ormeau.

 

All other RPAS operations from non-designated City parks is a regulated activity under Council’s Local Law 9 Parks and Reserves 2018 and can only be undertaken with written City consent.

CASA prohibits the operations of RPAS in some locations for example within 5.5 kilometres of an aerodrome (airport) or 500 metres from helicopter landing sites. Check the CASA droneflyer website or the OpenSky drone safety app for details.

City may issue written consent for operation of RPAS from a non-designated City park as part of an event e.g. filming. The City will only consider issuing consent for operation of RPAS from a non-designated City park if:

  • the proposed location is considered suitable
  • the proposed operation does not detrimentally interfere with park usage
  • the operator can supply current public liability insurance to the value of $20 million
  • the aircraft weighs less than 2 kilogram*
  • the operator can confirm they understand and agree to follow CASA rules for operating RPAS.

*Where the aircraft weighs 2 kilograms or more the operator must have a current Remote Pilot Licence (RePL) or Remote Operator’s Certificate (ReOC) issued by CASA.

Filming

Drone flying in field

When filming or taking photos for commercial purposes (including student filming), from a non-designated park, written City consent is required. For further information about filming permits please refer to our Film Attraction page.

Noise nuisance

The operation of RPAS can cause considerable noise nuisance to other park users and neighbours. Operators of RPAS should be mindful of the effect their aircraft use can have on others.

Breaches of CASA rules

RPAS operators must follow CASA rules for flying drones at all times. Breaches of these rules are enforceable by CASA and penalties may apply. Complaints or community concerns should be referred to CASA.

Privacy issues

The City cannot regulate privacy issues that may arise from the flying of RPAS. Complaints or community concerns should be referred to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

More information

For more information about flying RPAS around Gold Coast please phone the City of Gold Coast on 1300 GOLD COAST (1300 465 326).

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