On 29 September 2016 CASA is reducing the entry requirements for flying very small (under 2kg) drones commercially, and giving additional privileges to RPA operator's certificate holders.

Here's a rundown:

  1. From 29 September 2016 operators of very small commercial drones will not need an RPA operator's certificate, or a remote pilot licence.
  2. Instead operators of these drones can notify CASA five business days before their first commercial flight and agree to operate by the standard operating conditions and guidance in advisory circular (AC) 10110. Operators can notify CASA online and will require an aviation reference number. The notification lasts for 24 months and can be renewed every two years.
  3. The standard operating conditions include:
    1. not creating a hazard to another aircraft, person or property
    2. only flying during the day
    3. keeping the drone within visual line of sight
    4. not flying higher than 120 metres above ground level and
    5. keeping 30 metres away from other people.
  4. To operate outside of the standard operating conditions the operator needs an RPA operator's certificate and a remote pilot licence.
  5. RPA operator's certificate holders have new privileges including the ability to fly at night (with night rating), operate closer than 30 metres to other people (but not closer than 15 metres) and apply for additional exemptions to the regulations, such as beyond visual line of sight flying.