Drones warning from chief inspector for South Holland

Lincolnshire Police is giving out advice on the use of drones.
Lincolnshire Police is giving out advice on the use of drones.

The head of policing in South Holland has warned drone enthusiasts about the dangers of flying them irresponsibly.

Temporary Chief Inspector Deborah Clark of the South Holland and Boston Local Policing Team urged people given drones as birthday or Christmas presents to fly them legally so as not to “endanger people or property”.

Just last month, a man was cautioned in relation to a drone flight over Lincoln and close to two RAF stations.

Chief Insp Clark said: “Drones are cheap and easy to get in the air so, no doubt, many will have been given as presents over Christmas.

“The ownership and use of drones is not in itself unlawful but in certain circumstances their use may contravene air safety legislation and they can also be used to commit offences such as assaults, damage, harassment or voyeurism.

“We are raising awareness today of the general rules to follow but ultimately, anyone operating a drone should use common sense and take responsibility for it.”

A recent Freedom of Information request showed that between May 1 and October 31 last year, Lincolnshire Police had received 11 reports of drone use in the county.

Among the complaints were ones from Holbeach, Morton and Witham-on-the-Hill, near Bourne.

Chief Insp Clark said: “The responsibility for the drone is with the operator and failure to comply with the genral rules on flying them could lead to prosecution.

“Please do not fly your drone in any way that could endanger people or property.”

The general points to remember on flying drones are:

- You are responsible for each flight;

- Before each flight, check the drone for damage;

- Keep your drone in sight at all times;

- You are responsible for avoiding collisions;

- Keep away from congested areas;

- Do not fly within 50 metres of a person, vehicle, building or structure;

- Consider rights of privacy in terms of any images you obtain;

- Permission must be granted to use a drone for any commercial activity.

For further information, please visit www.caa.co.uk/uas