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AESA Sanctions for Drones

If you are passionate about drones and you are thinking of flying one in Spain, it is important that you know the main AESA sanctions for the use of drones to avoid fines. In this article we will tell you what are the main penalties imposed by the State Agency for Aviation Safety so you can fly your drone safely. 

But if you have already been sanctioned or you have any problem with AESA and you do not know how to manage it, contact our team, we can help you to solve the problem. 

Most frequent drone fines and penalties

AESA establishes strict rules and regulations to ensure safety in Spanish airspace. Ignoring these rules can lead to severe penalties that constitute administrative infractions. Let’s take a look at the most common infractions:

Flying near or over prohibited areas

Drones may not fly in areas near airports, airfields or military installations, as well as prisons or crowds of people. They are also restricted in air traffic control areas (CTR) to ensure the safety of other aircraft. Collaborating inspection entities monitor compliance with these restrictions.

Find out which allowed areas for flying drones in our blog.

Exceeding the maximum height and distance

Drones have an altitude limit of 120 meters and cannot go more than 500 meters away from their pilot, unless specific exceptions are met. The height is determined by the minimum height at which some aircraft can fly, which is 150 meters. The maximum height for drone flight is stipulated as 120 meters in order to leave a 30-meter margin so as not to hinder the flight of manned aircraft.

No identification on the drone

Each drone must be identified with the operator registration number of the person flying it. It does not need to be a plate itself, but, according to Royal Decree 2019/947 it can be put on the aircraft in format: sticker, vinyl, QR or even write it in marker pen. If the drone does not carry this identification, you run the risk of being fined.

Recording people without their consent

When using a drone you must protect people’s privacy. The Data Protection Act and the right to honor prevent recording images of people without their express consent. Therefore, if when using a drone you have recorded people without their consent, the images and videos obtained are illegal and you will not be able to use them.

Not having the necessary documentation

To fly drones legally in Spain, you must meet certain requirements, such as liability insurance, a drone pilot license and aircraft identification, among others. If you want us to help you with the documentation so you can fly your drone safely, contact us.

Classification of penalties

We can divide AESA penalties into two main categories, depending on whether it is a private or recreational use, or a professional use:

Penalties for private or recreational use

If you fly drones as a hobby and lack professional aeronautical knowledge, the penalties are less substantial in monetary terms, depending on the fine. These fines can range from €60 to €225,000 in very serious cases. Offenses that constitute administrative infractions and may cause damage or accidents are considered serious, and those that may cause severe accidents or even death are considered very serious.

Penalties for professional use

For professionals with aeronautical expertise, penalties can be more severe. They can range from €4,500 to €250,000 for serious infringements or even reach €4,500,000 for very serious infringements.

Amount of penalties

The amount of the penalties varies according to the seriousness of the infringement and whether the person committing it is a private individual or a professional. Here is a summary:

Amount of penalties to individuals:

  • Minor penalties: € 60 to € 45,000.
  • Serious penalties: € 45,001 to € 90,000.
  • Very serious penalties: € 90,001 to € 225,000.

Amount of penalties for professionals:

  • Minor penalties: € 4,500 up to € 70,000.
  • Serious penalties: € 70.001 to € 250.000.
  • Very serious penalties: € 250.000 to € 4.500.000.

Penalties can vary widely, but you should be aware that AESA takes airspace safety very seriously. Do not underestimate the consequences of violating these regulations.

It is crucial to know the AESA penalties to avoid fines and enjoy flying drones in Spain in the correct way, to avoid causing damage or serious aviation incidents. Always keep safety in mind and respect the rules to enjoy your passion for drones to the fullest – fly safe and legal!



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