Game of drones

CCTV Handbook 2016 Surveillance, Conferences & Events

Drones are causing quite a stir in the security industry due to their utility in monitoring and responding to alerts almost immediately. They also enable companies to patrol far larger areas faster and more safely than traditional patrols.

Lisa Emma-Iwuoha.
Lisa Emma-Iwuoha.

In South African law, drones are referred to as Remotely Piloted Aircraft systems (RPAs). There are quite a few laws governing the use of drones for private or commercial use (the laws differ between the private user and the commercial user). Lisa Emma-Iwuoha, an attorney from Michalsons Attorneys joined iLegal 2016 to take on the unenviable task of simplifying the legalities around drones.

Starting off, she explained that drone pilots need a valid RPA pilot’s licence, which is valid for 24 months from the date of issue. To obtain this, the pilot needs to be 18 or older, pass the CAA online theoretical knowledge exam, pass the skills test, complete a medical self-assessment form and be proficient in English.

You can also not fly in bad weather or where your view of the drone is obstructed – although different exemptions cater for this. If you use it for private use, however, you don’t need any of the special classifications or certifications.

Without special permission from the director of Civil Aviation, one is not allowed to fly a drone above a height of 50 metres, or close to a person or people, or a building. If the people are under your control, such as when filming a movie, for example, you can fly above them, and if you have permission you can also approach a building etc. You are also not allowed near or above strategic points, such as nuclear plants, prisons, police stations etc.

South African law says they are not allowed to transport cargo or make deliveries; tow another aircraft, perform aerial displays or fly in formation. Again, this does not apply if you have been granted an exemption.

Drone panel

After Lisa’s short presentation, Dr Craig Donald hosted a panel discussion on drones, where the audience was able to ask the experts any questions related to the technology they might have.

The panel members were:

• Attorney Lisa Emma-Iwuoha,

• Hennie Kieser, EXCO, Commercial Unmanned Aircraft Association of South Africa (CUAASA), and

• Francois Stander, research and resource development, Tshwane Metro Police, City of Tshwane.

The panel was able to expand on the current legalities that affect drone use and explain that any activity using drones for commercial purposes, even it is privately owned, still qualifies as a commercial operation and needs the relevant commercial licence and permissions. They also noted that going through the channels to become an accredited pilot will require a significant investment of both time and money.

For more information, contact Lisa Emma-Iwuoha, [email protected],

Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page

Further reading:

Pentagon appointed as Milestone distributor
Elvey Security Technologies News & Events Surveillance
Milestone Systems appointed Pentagon Distribution (an Elvey Group company within the Hudaco Group of Companies) as a distributor. XProtect’s open architecture means no lock-in and the ability to customise the connected video solution that will accomplish the job.

AI camera for all-around AI solutions
Surveillance Products & Solutions
VIVOTEK has expanded its AI security business with the AI entry-tier 9383-Series network camera, a cost-effective solution that allows users to easily recognise attributes of people and cars, thereby enhancing operation and management efficiencies.

Video Analytics Selection Guide 2024
The Video Analytics Selection Guide 2024 highlights a number of video analytics/AI solutions companies offer to enhance and optimise video surveillance operations.

Optimising your camera-to-operator ratio
Learning from critical data points in your security systems is the key to quality monitoring, effectively deploying resources, and scaling control room profitability. The golden equation is your true Camera-to-Operator ratio.

Storage Selection Guide 2024
Storage Selection Guide Surveillance
The Storage Selection Guide 2024 includes a range of video storage and management options for small, medium and large surveillance operations.

Directory of suppliers
The Directory of Suppliers and Solution Providers provides a selection of companies involved in various aspects of surveillance projects, from consulting to implementation and ongoing maintenance, as well as equipment suppliers.

Perspectives on personal care monitoring and smart surveillance
Leaderware Editor's Choice Surveillance Smart Home Automation IoT & Automation
Dr Craig Donald believes smart surveillance offers a range of options for monitoring loved ones, but making the right choice is not always as simple as selecting the latest technology.

The TCO of cloud surveillance
DeepAlert Verifier Technews Publishing Surveillance Infrastructure
SMART Security Solutions asked two successful, home-grown cloud surveillance operators for their take on the benefits of cloud surveillance to the local market. Does cloud do everything, or are there areas where onsite solutions are preferable?

Cloud or onsite, a comparison
Astrosec Surveillance
In the realm of electronic security, the choice between cloud-based and onsite software solutions for offsite CCTV monitoring can significantly impact operational efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and overall effectiveness.

On-camera AI and storage create added benefits
Elvey Security Technologies AI & Data Analytics Surveillance IoT & Automation
The days of standalone security systems are long past, and the drive is now to educate system integrators, installers, and end users on the return on investment that can be derived from intelligent, integrated BMS, IoT and security systems.