South Korea’s transport ministry lifted some regulations on drones to expand their commercial use by allowing after-dark flight for broadcasting feeds, aerial shows, and deliveries to inhabited islands.
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport on Thursday introduced a set of easing or exemptions in the regulations on unmanned aerial vehicles for commercial purpose. The biggest change in the easing is the strict rule that requires flyers to keep their drones within visual line of sight, which means they can only fly during the day and within distance of vision.
The ministry will allow commercial-purpose twilight flying when revised safety requirements are met.
Operators must submit details of the drone function, flight purpose, and schedule. It also needs to annex manual on actions in case of emergency situation in order to fly drones after dark and longer distance. The Korea Institute of Aviation Safety Technology would then perform safety tests, before the transport ministry issues a permit.
The relaxed rule would not only broaden the scope of commercial use but also public applications for firefighting and search and rescue.
The government plans to establish a legal framework to support the drone industry and build more testing grounds to meet the rising demand for drone pilots.
By Sohn Dong-woo and Kim Hyo-jin
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