Unsafe operation of drones

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) enforces safety rules for operators when operating remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) and model aircraft. These types of aircraft are more commonly referred to as drones.

Under the drone safety rules, unlicensed operators must:

  • be able to see their drone with their own eyes at all times (not using goggles or a screen)
  • not cause a hazard to other aircraft
  • fly further than 5.5 km away from an controlled airport (an airport with a control tower)
  • land the drone immediately if flying where an aircraft or helicopter is landing or taking off from, including helicopter landing sites.

Operators must not fly:

  • over, above people, or closer than 30 metres to people
  • in restricted airspace without prior permission
  • near emergencies where police, fire or an ambulance may be attending
  • at night, cloud or fog
  • over populated beaches, parks, houses, sports ovals or public venues
  • higher than 120 metres (400 feet) above the ground.

If you think any of these rules were broken, submit a complaint to CASA:

complain by online form icon

by online form

Noise from drones

The issue of aircraft (drone) noise is not within the remit of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

Find out more about noise regulations on the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development’s website.

To complain about noise made by a drone, we recommend you contact the drone operator (if known) or make an aircraft noise complaint through Airservices' Noise Complaints and Information Service:

complain by online form icon


Submit an online complaint

complain by phone icon

by phone

Call 1800 802 584 (freecall)
or 1300 302 240 (Sydney)
Fax (02) 9556 6641

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by post

Noise Complaints and Information Services
GPO Box 211
Mascot NSW 1460

Privacy and security

Call 000 if you have an immediate or urgent security concern with respect to a drone.

To make a privacy complaint about a drone contact the individual, company or organisation who is flying the drone.

You can complain to the Office of Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) if you are not satisfied with the response from them or don't receive a response within 30 days.

Contact the OAIC:

complain by online form icon

by online form

Submit a privacy complaint form to OAIC

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by phone