EASA proposed new rules for operations in BVLOS over populated areas

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has published recently the Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) 2020-07 entitled “Unmanned aircraft system beyond visual line operations over populated areas or assemblies of people in the ‘specific’ category” .

The objective of this NPA is to clarify the conditions under which unmanned aircraft system (UAS) beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) operations over a populated area or an assembly of people can be authorised in the ‘specific’ category.

This NPA proposes to amend the Acceptable Means of Compliance (AMC) and Guidance Material (GM) to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/947. The AMC and GM to Article 11 ‘Rules for conducting an operational risk assessment’ of said Regulation are proposed to be amended to define the intrinsic UAS ground risk classes (GRCs) for the following operational scenarios:
-BVLOS operations over a populated area; and
-BVLOS operations over an assembly of people.

The proposed amendments are expected to increase safety, improve harmonisation among EASA Member States, and facilitate societal acceptance of UAS BVLOS operations in the ‘specific’ category.  

Currently, comments can be submitted using the Comment-Response Tool (CRT) available at http://hub.easa.europa.eu/crt/. The deadline for submission of comments is the 29th May 2020.  

Following the closing of the public commenting period, EASA will review all the comments received.  Based on the comments received, EASA will develop a decision that amends the AMC and GM to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/9475 (the ‘UAS Regulation’). A summary of the comments received will be provided in the explanatory note to the decision. The comments received on this NPA and the EASA responses to them will be reflected in a comment-response document (CRD). The CRD will be published on the EASA website.  

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