Airports Council International (ACI) has called upon the European Union (EU) to adopt a rulebook to regulate the use of drones across EU skies.
According to ACI Europe, the EU Aviation Strategy has paved the way for the development of a new regulation on the use of drones. It was announced in December 2015.
Political agreement on the new European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) regulation and the aviation community’s support late last year for the Helsinki Declaration are also expected to boost the creation of a rulebook on the use of drones in the EU.
ACI Europe director general Olivier Jankovec said: “The airport industry is embracing innovation and we are excited about the potential opportunities that drone technology presents, in particular in relation to infrastructure maintenance and operational efficiency, passenger facilitation and more.
“That said, the safety issues concerning the use of drones in and around airports are increasingly well-documented, underlining the urgent need for an effective regulatory framework on this.”
ACI Europe further noted that drone technology has rapidly developed over the last five years and could have major implications for operational efficiency and safety.
Various research projects are also underway to make the technology useful for air transport and other sectors.
Therefore, ACI Europe has urged the EU to swiftly adopt safety and traffic management rules on the use of drones.
They have also highlighted the importance of drone registration, performance-based rules, and a modern approach to integrating drones at airports.