EU Drone Laws

EU Drone Laws

Max Hjalmarsson - EU Drone Laws

Guest Writer: Max Hjalmarsson

New EU Drone Laws - What the New Drone Regulations Mean for You

EDIT: the introduction of the new regulations has been postponed until 4th January 2021.

As you may have heard there will be new regulations on drones starting 1st July 2020. The new drone regulations 2019/947 & 2019/947 will take affect on 1 July 2020 but will have a transitional period ending 1 July 2022. After 1 July 2022 all drones that are put on the market will have to have the new CE-mark, and, among other things, be able to identify remotely in real time.

The biggest change from 1 July 2020 is that you as an operator will have to register with the NAA (in Sweden it is Transportstyrelsen). Depending on the weight of your drone, you will (most likely) also have to take on online training and online exam. The exam will consist of 40 multiple-choice questions distributed appropriately across the following subjects:

  1. Air safety/airspace restrictions;

  2. Aviation regulation;

  3. Human performance limitations;

  4. Operational procedures;

  5. UAS general knowledge;

  6. Privacy and data protection;

  7. Insurance; e.g. security

What do the new drone regulations mean for me as an operator if I fly my drone [model xxxx]?

The image below hopefully gives you some clarification. But first there are two main questions you will have to ask yourself:

1. Does it have the new CE-mark? (C0 – C4) and
2. What is the weight of my drone?

If it does have a Cx-mark it will be well marked on the drone and its box. If it does not have a C(x)-mark then the “magic” weight limit to stay below is 500g – valid until 1 July 2022. After that it will be reduced to 250g [2019/947 Article 22]. Then if your drone weighs in under 500g you only have to register with the authorities, but no exams or insurance will be required.

As of today (June 2020), drones aren’t required to have Cx-marking, which means that the transitional regulations (2019/947 Article 22) comes into act. Article 22 adjusts the weight limits for a limited transitional time and ends 1 July 2022. It reads that drones which do not meet with the C(x) requirements and have a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of:

  • < 500g belongs to A1,

  • < 2kg belongs to A2 and

  • < 25 kg belongs to A3.

The same article also reads that for the same period the safety buffer for A2 i extended from a min. of 30 m to a min. of 50m.

Classification of common drones

Drones without a C(x)-mark will for the limited period fall under 2019/947 Article 20 and until 1 July 2022 be categorised by the following weight limits;

MTOW <250g, limited A1 (similar to C0)
MTOW <500g belongs to A1,
MTOW < 2 kg belongs to A2
MTOW < 25 kg belongs to A3.

After 1 July 2022 these more generous limits will no longer apply and drones without the new CE-mark (c0-c4) will belong to either A1 or A3, (A1 are only those with MTOW < 250g).

During the transition period, the following applies:

Transition period: classification of common drones

I hope these images brought you some clarifications. If you have any questions you can reach me at “max (at) “

Original article was posted by Max on his company’s blog, you can find that here. Scanax are drone consultants, specialising in improving UAS operations, drone operation risk assessments, writing operational manuals and full applications. 

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