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FAA introduces drone registration website

by Ben Nuelle

The Federal Aviation Administration introduces a user-friendly web-based process for owners to register Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and they’re waiving the fee the first 30 days.

The FAA is waving the registration fee of $5 dollars from Dec. 21, 2015 to Jan 20, 2016. This is in an effort to encourage as many people as possible to register quickly. The registration is for UAV’s weighing more than 0.55 pounds and less than 55 pounds including payloads such as on-board cameras.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx says “Make no mistake: unmanned aircraft enthusiasts are aviators, and with that title comes a great deal of responsibility. “Registration gives us an opportunity to work with these users to operate their unmanned aircraft safely.

Foxx is excited to welcome these new aviators into the culture of safety and responsibility that defines American innovation.

The Registration Task Force delivered recommendations to FAA Administrator Michael Huerta and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx on November 21. The rule incorporates many of the task force recommendations.

Registration is a statutory requirement that applies to all aircraft.  Under this rule, any owner of a small UAS who has previously operated an unmanned aircraft exclusively as a model aircraft prior to December 21, 2015, must register no later than February 19, 2016.

Owners of any other UAV purchased for use as a model aircraft after December 21, 2015 must register before the first flight outdoors. Owners may use either the paper-based process or the new streamlined, web-based system.  Owners using the new streamlined web-based system must be at least 13 years old to register.

Owners may register through a web-based system at: www.faa.gov/uas/registration

Registrants will need to provide their name, home address and e-mail address. Upon completion of the registration process, the web application will generate a Certificate of Aircraft Registration/Proof of Ownership that will include a unique identification number for the UAS owner, which must be marked on the aircraft.

The online registration system does not yet support registration of small UAS used for any purpose other than hobby or recreation – for example, using an unmanned aircraft in connection with a business. The FAA is developing enhancements that will allow such online registrations by spring of 2016.