Low Flying Zones Now on Airshare Maps

November 25, 2015 Harriet Jenkins

Here at airshare, we are working on a number of projects to enhance and improve the website for drone flyers. We are often told by operators that the airshare maps are an invaluable tool in helping to determine where you can and cannot fly without permission. Thanks everyone for the positive feedback!

The airshare maps show where control zones and uncontrolled aerodromes are located. If you are planning to operate in a control zone you will need Air Traffic Control (ATC) authorisation and if you are planning to operate within 4km of an uncontrolled aerodrome you will need the aerodrome operator’s agreement. Please remember if your flight is shielded (see definition below), you will not need ATC or aerodrome operator permission. 

Shielded operation definition in Part 101:

An operation of an aircraft within 100 metres of, and below the top of, a natural or man-made object
Outside of the boundary of all aerodromes; and
In airspace that is physically separated from the aerodrome by a barrier that is capable of arresting the flight of the aircraft (Airshare hint: if there is no barrier e.g. a fence between you and the aerodrome, then your operation is not shielded)

There are of course, other airspace restrictions that need to be taken into account. A very important one to consider for UAV operators is Low Flying Zones. Under Civil Aviation Rule Part 101.9, UAVs are not allowed to operate in these zones under any circumstances:

101.9 Low flying zones

A person must not operate any of the following within a low flying zone

designated under Part 71:

(1) an unmanned aircraft:

(2) a kite:

(3) a rocket:

(4) a gyroglider:

(5) a parasail.

Low flying zones are particularly relevant and singled out as prohibited areas for Part 101 operations as manned aircraft operate at low levels in these areas and they can be used anytime during the day. Often they are used for flight training purposes and will have trainee pilots operating in them. 

To make the airshare maps even more valuable for UAV operators we have now added Low Flying Zones (LFZs) – you will see these as orange areas on the map. Make sure your next drone flight is well clear of a LFZ!

Thanks to all our airshare users for your continued support and for logging nearly 6,000 flights so far!

- The airshare Team

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