Most drones, even small ones, weigh more than 1 pound and therefore will be subject to the federal registration rules announced Monday. (Intel Free Press / CC BY-SA 2.0)

Residents of the U.S. owning a drone that weighs more than half a pound will have to register the device with the Federal Aviation Administration before launching it into the skies.

The Guardian reports:

The FAA and the Department of Transportation (DoT) announced new rules on Monday that will mean nearly all drone operators will have to register their drones in a national database.

The authorities have been attempting to crack down on unlicensed drones amid their rising popularity – they are expected to be one of this Christmas’s biggest toys. But drones have been seen as a major menace and have disrupted firefighting efforts, been used to snoop on neighbors and to smuggle drugs into prison (not to mention regularly flying too close to manned aircraft).

The new rules cover all drones weighing more than 0.55lb (0.25kg) and take effect on 21 December. A significant number of Christmas toys may be affected – and quite a few children may need to get their parents to register for them, because licensed drone pilots must be over 13 years of age. Drone owners who began flying their quadcopter vehicles before that date will have until 19 February to comply.

Read more here.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.


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