Hungarian drone regulation

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From January, unmanned aircraft can only be flown using the HungaroControl application, ie the Hungarian air traffic control application, according to the bill of the Ministry of Innovation and Technology (ITM), all of which affect agricultural applications, the ministry announced in the first half of November.

According to the information, in order to increase flight safety, drone operators can find out about airspace use possibilities, restricted or prohibited areas from the mobile application, MTI writes in its summary.

The ministry explains that general EU regulations for unmanned aerial vehicles came into force last summer. Additional regulations laying down flight execution and operating conditions should have been applied from July this year, but due to the coronavirus pandemic, this deadline was extended until the end of this year.

The creation of certain detailed rules has remained the responsibility of the Member States, and the ITM proposal contains elements of the new domestic drone regulation at the legal level. The draft creates the necessary framework for safe operation, flexible and innovative use of drones.

In the future, the aviation authority will keep records of aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicle systems and their operators. Hungarian airspace can only be used by registered vehicles. The new regulations introduce the concept of an unmanned toy aircraft, which means a drone that is lighter than 120 grams and cannot move more than 100 meters away from the operator. These vehicles will not be subject to registration.

The related amendment to the Aviation Act sets out the basic rules related to the website and mobile application operated by HungaroControl Zrt. With a few exceptions, the use of an application that provides up-to-date airspace information and informs droners about restrictions will be mandatory.

The regulation also provides greater protection for the fundamental rights to privacy and the peace of the home. Under the proposed provisions, unmanned aircraft may only be used in ad hoc airspace over populated areas. Game drones are also exempt from this requirement. The designation of an ad hoc airspace for a maximum of seven days may continue to be requested from the military aviation authority, failing which droning within a populated area shall be considered a traffic offense.

For the sake of undisturbed family life, a person who takes a photograph of his or her other apartment or occupants without the consent of the persons concerned may be held liable for a breach of privacy.

Hungary wants to play a leading role in the dissemination of drone technology, at least at the regional level. With drone-based services, the level of innovation, cost efficiency, value creation and economic recovery of companies can be significantly increased. The spread of the technology has many additional benefits, its positive effects will be felt in software development, more economical maintenance of agricultural areas or more effective research and rescue, among other things, the description states.

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