Author Topic: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?  (Read 6301 times)

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Offline thaiga

Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« on: December 09, 2014, 10:25:54 PM »
With the increase in popularity of drones for both commercial and private use around the world, ThaiTech looks at the laws with regards to flying a drone in Thailand.



What are fast becoming the latest must have gadget, it has been reported that drones are increasingly on many people’s wish list in the run up to Christmas.

Here in Thailand, there has also been an increase in people using drones and if you follow prominent blogger Richard Barrow, you’ll have no doubt have seen some of the spectacular photos that can be taken using such a device.

This video, taken in Bangkok, is also another example of the type of footage which can be captured using a drone, or Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) to give them their official name:

DJI Phantom H3-2D Bangkok(Thailand)

In fact, Bangkok was arguably one of the first locations in the world whereby drones were used to report news, when The Nation, Bangkok Post and others, embraced ‘drone journalism’ when covering the political protests in Bangkok earlier in 2014.

Such is the popularity of drones that if you type “where to buy a…” into Google, you’ll see that the search engine features the word ‘drone’ pretty high up the list.

So with potentially thousands of drones taking to the skies above Thailand in the not too distant future what’s stopping one of them flying into plane, crashing into an apartment block or injuring some innocent bystander?

Laws on drones in Thailand remain unclear

The current situation is in some ways reminiscent to that of the early days of the motor car, with people driving at all kinds of speeds not really knowing what was legal and/or safe at that time.

However, whilst the laws regarding drones remains somewhat of a grey area, you would be wrong to think that you aren’t governed by some kind of laws or legislation when flying a drone in Thailand.

Last week, ThaiTech spoke to a property agent in Hua Hin who had been using a DJI Phantom Vision 2 to take aerial photos of property and plots of land for sale in the province of Prachuap Khiri Khan. The agent, who asked us to respect his anonymity, said that he had been requested by the local police not to fly such a device in the area.

He said the police also told him that any radio controlled air bourne device, such as a drone, airplane or radio controlled helicopter, requires the person flying the device in Thailand to have license.

ThaiTech has so far been unable to confirm if the requirements for needing a license to fly a drone in Thailand is true. It seems from the authorities we contacted, everyone is unsure on what exactly the rules are with regards to regulation of drones.

As part of our research, we were advised to read this document from the Department of Civil Aviation which clearly details a number of restricted areas where drones or any other aircraft would not be permitted to fly in Thailand.

However, the laws for flying drones in Thailand still remain unclear, so if you own a drone how can you make sure you’re not breaking the law?

Using a drone responsibly

Even if you think you are not breaking the law, it’s not unreasonable to say that by flying a drone you would still be in breach of a person’s privacy.

Therefore, if you do fly a drone with a camera, you need to make sure you are at least flying it responsibly.

But how do you do that?

Well, in the UK, the Information Commissioners Office offers some pretty good advice, which could be applied to any country with regards to drones.

The recommendations are as follows:
   
 Let people nearby know before you start flying and recording
    Find out how capable the camera is before recording
    Consider your surroundings
    Plan your flight
    Keep your drone visible and in view
    Think carefully before sharing any images online
    Keep any images from your drone safe and secure

Earlier this year, Balpa, a group representing pilots in the UK, called for better protection for the general public from drones and even went as far to say it wants drones to meet the same safety and piloting requirements as other aircraft.

What are your thoughts on the use of drones?

Do you think they pose a real security risk?

Do you own a drone and fly one in Thailand?

If you do, let us know in the comments section below.

MORE HERE
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Online Taman Tun

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2014, 11:24:46 AM »
Would not be a very good idea to fly one from our house as we are very close to Wing 1!
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 

Offline dawn

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2014, 12:44:24 PM »
we are very close to Wing 1!
wing 1 is that a chinese take away ;)
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Online Taman Tun

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2014, 03:51:12 PM »
No Dawn, it is not to be confused with Wing Wan which is the local takeaway.
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 

Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2014, 08:06:47 PM »
Richard Barrow has been flying his drone over Thailand for some time; more here:

http://www.thailandfromabove.com/
 

Offline dawn

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2014, 12:02:58 PM »

not a very cool move advertising his site on here after past events :uhm
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Offline Johnnie F.

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2014, 01:31:00 PM »
not a very cool move advertising his site on here after past events :uhm

I can already read his second post on here: "Please remove the link to my site from your forum."

Should I wait for that?
Fun is the one thing that money can't buy
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2014, 11:24:21 AM »

Well at least we know which side of the fence mr. not socool is on.
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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2014, 10:43:21 PM »
Here in Thailand, there has also been an increase in people using drones and if you follow prominent blogger Richard Barrow, you’ll have no doubt have seen some of the spectacular photos that can be taken using such a device.

Thaiga, you do realise this is a direct quote from your cut n paste from Thai Visa? I'm not a 'sides' person, but I do take the time to read what I post.

If I recall, "Richard Barrow" objected to uncredited excerpts being dropped into the forum. By you.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2014, 12:39:49 AM »
His actual words were.  thaiga and others.  Now show me a post without a credit to him.

As for you do take the time to read what you post. I believe this is one of your posts.

expat life in Korat is mired in crap

You lot should seriously consider getting real lives.

Is it any wonder expat life in Korat is mired in crap when you lot spend your lives immersed in the stuff.

http://koratfart.com/features-of-korat/expat-life-in-korat-is-mired-in-crap/msg13096/#msg13096
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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2014, 06:58:47 PM »
Well at least we know which side of the fence mr. not socool is on.

It seems reasonable that you explain what fence, and which side I'm seemingly on.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2014, 07:29:50 PM »
Sure when you answer the above post ;D
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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2014, 09:16:12 PM »
Answer what? You're quoting a post from May 2012..... Muck raking, and a blatant attempt at deflection.

Stick with this thread, and do me the courtesy of explaining which fence and which sides.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2014, 10:33:18 PM »
If you don't know what side ot the fence your on. well!

I don't have to explain nothing to you, you already know.

Why don't you ask the admin to remove my posts, i'm sure you'd be happy then.

Oh! merry christmas ;D

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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2014, 01:46:48 AM »
If you don't know what side ot the fence your on. well!

I don't have to explain nothing to you, you already know.


No, I don't know. What fence? Which side? These are your words, not mine: you said you knew about fences and sides, not me.

You are right; you "don't have to explain nothing" to me: I'm not sure it would make sense anyway.
 

Offline Roger

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2014, 08:42:05 AM »
IMHO it is a good idea for a licence to be required, to fly a drone over public areas or someone else's property. Drones are seriously invasive to privacy, particularly with those on board cameras and there's also a safety issue with off-ground cables etc. The implications around airports are frightening and TT - please don't buy one.
I've noticed a drone at the King's Stadium sometimes, circling the crowd during a game. On that website linked there were some great photos - drones are a powerful tool.
They are truly amazing 'toys' but drones are, in effect, 'aircraft' .........
CK at the time I missed that original post recalled by Thaiga - I guess it came on a bad day for you and hope you feel better about Korat now. I honestly enjoy your posts and exchanging views.
You too Thaiga.



 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2014, 12:26:30 PM »
Amazing tiny insect robot spies. US military has designed spy drones so small that they are starting to look like tiny insects. Insect spies are used to get into areas that they normally wouldn't be able to reach. These secret insect drones are said to help the fight against terrorism/terrorists.

Secret Insect Spy Drones
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Online Taman Tun

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2014, 12:50:03 PM »
Roger, there has been some intensive low flying training over our house this morning.  I am going to get a drone equipped with air to air missiles....
We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out. Churchill
 

Offline Roger

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2014, 01:12:42 PM »
Thaiga. A spoof. Surely. Or maybe that's what's been buzzing around TT this morning !
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2014, 01:36:01 PM »
Thaiga. A spoof. Surely.
I think it is a roger.

Next time you get an insect bite it could be.........

Mosquito sized Stealth Spy Drones can Extract DNA & RFID Chip Targets?


Is this a mosquito? Is it an insect spy drone funded by the US Government.

This image has been circulated all across the Internet since at least 2012 to show a mosquito size MAV (Miniature Aerial Vehicle or Micro Air Vehicle) funded by the US Government that can be remotely controlled with the ability to take photos, extract DNA or leave RFID tracking technology on humans.

However, this is a HOAX that went way out of control, thereby causing many real threats to be dismissed as paranoia!
 
FULL STORY: conspiracy-watch.org

Sgt Carl Boyd, of First Battalion Royal Fusiliers, with a Black Hornet camera helicopter. Salisbury Plane, Wiltshire. The mini spy in the sky, which has a 20 minute fly time is already in use in Afghanistan

                                                                            Black Hornet   
Army test next generation nano drone - the Black Hornet
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Offline Roger

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2014, 01:53:32 PM »
Hey Thaiga my ole' Man could've helped them. He gave a lecture about the History of Flight, to the Royal Aeronautical Society, about 50 years ago. One of his props was a plane about 5" long, fuselage 1/16th ply and the wings, 2 feathers from a small bird. Powered by a thin rubber band, this gem would fly 20 metres slowly and with perfect stability. Stunning. About the same size as the 'Black Hornet'.
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2014, 02:04:52 PM »
Here's one roger and how to make one HERE: instructables



Rubber Band Powered Aeroplane
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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2014, 04:45:21 PM »
I honestly enjoy your posts and exchanging views.

Nicely done Roger - thanks, and I enjoy your posts, comments and discussions also.

CK
 

Offline Roger

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2014, 05:06:47 PM »
Thaiga thanks for that. Your model flies really badly ! Horrible design - you could dig up cassava with that prop.
The model I referred to had a single spine for the fuselage, a tiny prop and feather wings and tailplane.
 

Offline dawn

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2014, 05:08:26 PM »
iv'e just caught up with that post it's disgusting :o an apology wouldn't go a miss

expat life in Korat is mired in crap
the earliest light of day
 

Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #25 on: December 23, 2014, 01:20:00 PM »
nature vs drones

In this latest 'nature vs drones' video a female kangaroo is seen eyeing up the drone, presumably looking to protect the baby that's at her side.

Drone vs Kangaroo


                                                                          Hawk vs. Drone!

Hawk vs. Drone! (Hawk Attacks Quadcopter)
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Offline thaiga

Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #26 on: December 26, 2014, 12:24:41 PM »
People are unwrapping drones for Christmas and it's not going so well

Thanks to the massive rise in of consumer drones, one of the most popular items under the tree this year is likely to have four rotors and a camera. The FAA even released a video this week that proposes best practices to help people "stay off the naughty list" as they play with their airborne gifts.


drone over the fence

Drones are no longer specialty items, they come in all shapes and sizes. From DJI's affordable film-quality options to Parrot's toy-sized mini versions, they've practically become a stocking stuffer. And looking at social media, it appears some people are having a lot of fun with them already.


drone stuck in a tree

Videos & more pics HERE: theverge
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Offline thaiga

Re: Concerned government authorities - drones to be controlled
« Reply #27 on: December 31, 2014, 12:45:34 PM »
Toy drones to be controlled

 Concerned government authorities are now contemplating legislations to control unmanned aircraft or drones as they are gaining popularity in the country for its ability to provide airborne images that could threaten national security.

This unmanned aircraft toy  had been used to smuggle drugs and even mobile phones into prisons.

In light of this, government agencies involved in the matter are preparing to forward proposals for such controls.

Now unmanned aircraft otherwise known as UAVs (unmanned airborne vehicles) or toy drones are available in the market   and at affordable prices.

But what posed concern for security authorities is that  they now could provide  unique images of high-rises and small communities in such high quality and clarity.

Security authorities fear  that ill-intent individuals may employ them for illicit activities such as surveillance into restricted zones or to violate personal privacy of certain persons in the community.

Most recently, some drones have been used to carry drugs and hand-phones into correction facilities.

Experts in the field of UAVs at King Mongkut University of Technology Thonburi  Campus revealed that the first time such vehicles were used in Thailand was 10 years ago when they were brought in to be used by government agencies.

Later on UAVs became popular as a form of recreation activity as developments in technology allowed them to be produced in smaller sizes. Most of these new, latter generation drones are brought in from China, the USA or Japan and are divided into two types.

The first are classified as toys and are priced starting at 1,000 baht upwards while the second type are classified as enthusiast special equipment and most are employed commercially or in research activities.

These machines are priced anywhere between tens of thousands baht up to hundreds of thousand baht.

The more popular of these are multi-rotor with four propellers and can fly to ranges of more than 1 km. They are priced very high because they employ computer programs to automatically control its flight-path. Because of this, concerns have been raised over the possibility of these UAVs being used for illegal activities.

 Assistant professor Dr Annop Ruengwiset, the head of UAV research at the Department of Engineering at the University said he foresaw problems with regards to UAVs when it applies to the amateur UAV enthusiast.

“Because they are relatively cheap to buy and quite easy to pilot, more and more people are buying them. Most of these amateurs do not possess a thorough knowledge or understanding for operating such vehicles that is why we need to regulate such activities,” he said.

Royal Aeronautic Sports Association of Thailand Group director  Captain Wirayut Dissayarin, meanwhile, stated that the proposal for regulating remotely piloted aircraft which includes drones is in fact started and finished.

What remains is to forward the proposal to the National Legislative Assembly for approval. If approved, these aircraft will have to be registered under one of three classifications which are recreation, commercial and governmental. Each type of aircraft registered under the three classifications will have strict rules limiting their use as well as the type of user who is legally qualified to purchase them, he said.

This makes for easier tracking and policing the pilots themselves will be more convenient. There must also be instruction provided to instruct the pilots on the rules and regulations as well as the proper etiquette for piloting unmanned aircraft, he said.

One UAV enthusiast who was questioned agreed totally that the sport needs to be regulated as UAVs are very easy to buy and pilot.

As of the present, he stated that they can be flown just about anywhere which posses some safety concerns for when control is lost and they crash.

“Because they have propellers they pose a certain degree of danger in the event that they crash into human-beings. Properly regulated, the overall safety of the sport and a general standard of conduct will be in place which will result in a well organised and enjoyable past-time,” he said.

He also said there had been incidents where some drones had strayed into the commercial aircraft flight paths such as recently in the UK.

This forced authorities to specify that drones can only be flown no higher or further than human line of sight.

Thailand needs such measures because on the whole these aircraft are used legitimately for constructive purposes.

So far, only 10% have been employed in illicit activities. Regulations must also take into account the buyers as well as the shops that sell these aircrafts so as to ensure that they are used as they were originally designed to be used, he viewed.  thaipbs.or.th

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_O8pXL9XA_M

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Offline thaiga

Re: permission to fly drones must be sought from the Transport Ministry
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2015, 04:11:28 PM »
Flying personal drones to come under tightened control soon

 Personal drones will come under control under a new regulation now being drawn by the Transport Ministry.

These personal drones are considered a threat to aviation as they can fly at high altitude and at random path, and also a violation of privacy of others as they are equipped with spy cameras.

The proposed control to be forwarded to the cabinet for approval was revealed by Transport Minister ACM Prajin Juntong at the weekend.

ACM Prajin stated that the new regulation is being drawn up by the Civil Aviation Department under the Air Navigation Act and will be submitted for approval by the cabinet before coming into effect next month.

He said the regulation will control the use of two types of drones, first for sports, education and research,and second for personal use.

The penalties for unauthorised use of drones will be a one-year imprisonment and a fine of 40,000 baht.

ACM Prajin said the first type of drones normally do not fly too high, so their flight paths could be contained in specific areas.

But for personal drones, he said they would be strictly controlled, because they can fly at great heights and could violate others’ rights.

Besides, these drones could pose safety threat to air traffic safety and to national security, he said.

ACM Prajin said these unmanned aerial aircraft are often found to have been fitted with cameras and are sometimes used to spy, or intrude on people’s privacy.

Under the new regulation to be put in force, weight and size as well as fuel consumption will be fixed for drones..

One of the stipulations is that drone will not be allowed to be in the air over an hour, and permission to fly drones must be sought from the Transport Ministry.

And significantly, personal drone installed with surveillance camera is prohibited to be airborne. However, it allows drones with cameras only for businesses that require photography, such as for film making and for news media use.

Drone will be allowed to fly at a height of between 15-150 metres to avoid disrupting commercial planes, which usually fly at altitudes of at least 305 metres.

But flying too low is also prohibited as it could disturb residential areas.

thaipbs.or.th
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Offline coolkorat

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Re: Flying a drone in Thailand: Could you be breaking the law?
« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2015, 08:13:17 PM »
From what is being said elsewhere on the net, applicable to Thailand and many other countries, the use of drones by amateurs has exploded over the last few months. There are now magazines specifically on aerial drones for sale in the UK; the quality of the images/ videos produced is often stunning. That the junta has decided to act and to take the route of least resistance and ban all private drones is not a surprise. Countries with a more open democratic process are struggling to successfully word legislation in the face of freedom/ human rights opposition (such as the US).

I would hesitate a guess that the blanket ban slated to begin in Feb will be gradually amended and reduced, particularly when there is an opportunity to licence the activity and gain revenue from it; in the UK you are already required to have training and certification to fly a drone commercially and the CAA has issued detailed guidance for non-commercial pilots (see http://droneflight.co.uk/pages/summary-of-uk-legal-requirements).

It would be a shame to lose this unique and exciting viewpoint but at the same time I understand the need to keep secure areas secure, for privacy to be respected and for safety to be paramount.  As soon as some country/countries manage to produce well-worded legislation the Thai Government may feel able to reconsider. In the meantime there may soon be a number of bargain-priced drones up for grabs on Bahtsold.....

p.s. I think it is wrong and sensationalist for Thai PBS to say that drones are fitted with "spy cameras". They may be fitted with cameras; they may be immorally/ illegally used to spy, but they are not fitted with spy cameras.
 

 



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