Latviski English По-русски
Saturday 22.10.2016 | Name days: Irīda, Īrisa

Experts: drones could potentially threaten air traffic safety

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUUnmanned Aerial Vehicles, or drones, are becoming more and more popular. However, not many people now that reckless use of these machines can put at risk human safety. Reports about UAV owners using aviation frequencies, putting at risk air traffic safety, come nearly every week, as reported by Elektroniskie sakari.

Use of inappropriate frequencies can result in connection loss between UAV remote controls and the drone itself. In order to avoid such problems, experts urge UAV owners in Latvia to ensure the frequencies they use comply with Latvian frequencies plan.

UAVs are becoming more and more popular in Latvia – they are often used to film and take pictures during concerts, out in the wild and in towns. According to radio-communications engineer Martins Gludins, radio-controlled drones do not require individual radio frequency permits as long as they use radio frequencies stated in the National Radio Frequencies Plan.

Some of the frequencies are allowed to be used without permission. However, there are a number of radio frequencies the use of which has to be individually coordinated. It is absolutely prohibited to use frequencies reserved for navy, air traffic, emergencies and danger warning frequencies.

Although UAV control and data transfer functions use multiple types of common frequencies, and considering that UAVs sold in Europe are programmed to use the same ones by default, sometimes people buy these devices from other countries, which means those devices are not necessarily programmed in accordance with EU standards.

Before turning on a UAV, make sure the drone is programmed to use only permitted radio frequency waves; it is not all that complicated. If the UAV has CE label, it means the device is already programmed for a specific range of frequencies.

If there is no such label, the device cannot be used.

One other important thing to mention is using drones close to prohibited areas, airports and close to infrastructure objects: roads, rail-roads, chemical storage facilities or crowds of people. As mentioned by head of European Affairs and International Relations office of Civil Aviation Agency Aivita Lublina-Goldmane, drones are a new thing for Latvia. With that, people often do not understand the potential dangers these machines pose. There have already been multiple situations when pilots noticed UAVs flying very close to aircraft. «UAVs are not birds – they pose a serious threat to aircraft. Imagine what would happen if a UAV crashes into a passenger aircraft,» – says CAA representative.

Drones can also create serious risks when hovering above Riga Freeport, where large volumes of chemicals are stored at all times. She also mentions the dangers of a drone crashing into a train or a crowd of people during a concert or some other event.

«If you decide to pilot your drone above a field on a low altitude, you don’t have to inform anyone about it. But if you want to pilot the drone in some public place, you have to coordinate your plans with CAA,» – explains Lublina-Goldmane.

Drones referred to in aviation as RPAS (Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems) were not all that popular a few years ago. Lately, however, they have become a lot more popular. This is why requirements are being developed around the world in order to make sure drones do not put at risk aircraft and human safety. Europe plans to adopt new regulations before the end of 2017. Shortly after that, Latvian authorities plan to develop rules for Latvia as well.


Leave a reply

Four teachers in Latvia are paid wages that exceed EUR 2,000

In September 2016, the biggest teacher’s salary paid in Latvia with bonuses was EUR 2,260.27, as LETA was informed by Education and Science Ministry.

Producer price level down 1.6% in Latvia’s industry

Compared to August, the level of producer prices in Latvian industry increased by 0.3% in September 2016.

SRS Tax Debt Enforcement Office director Cerneckis steps down

On Friday, 21 October, director of Latvian State Revenue Service’s Tax Debt Enforcement Office Kaspars Cerneckis submitted his resignation.

Bookmakers predict Sadurskis’ remainder in his post for the rest of the year

Latvian Education Minister Karlis Sadurskis has been forced to distance himself from political opponents and teacher trade unions because of criticisms regarding reduced wages caused by the teachers’ pay reform. Nevertheless, political support will keep the minister in his post, bookmakers believe.

Lithuanian military discussing deployment of long-range missiles

A senior Lithuanian military officer has on October 20 stated that Lithuania is considering the deployment of long-range missiles in the country in the framework of hosting a multinational NATO battalion in 2017.

Ukraine in joint declaration with Lithuania, Poland condemns WWII aggressors

The Vekhovna Rada of Ukraine has this week adopted a joint declaration with Lithuania and Poland attaching responsibility for World War II to Germany, the USSR and the international community’s «appeasement policy».

Saeima Budget Committee conceptually approves 2017 budget project

On Thursday, 20 October, Saeima’s Budget and Finance Committee supported the state budget project for 2017, the medium-term budget contents for 2017, 2018 and 2019 and 57 legal drafts associated with the project.

Facebook sorry for removing breast cancer informative video

Facbook has expressed apologies for the removal of a breast cancer informative video shared on the social network by a Swedish foundation.

Two of the last twenty three first refugees have left Latvia

The last two of the first twenty three refugees resettled in Latvia have left for Germany, as reported by LTV.

Pregnant woman in Italy dies after doctor allegedly refused to perform abortion

Police in predominantly Catholic Italy is investigating a case of a woman pregnant with twins dying after miscarriage.

Russia applies discount on transit from Belarus

Russian Railways has applied a 25% discount on petrol, diesel fuel and crude cargo transports from oil processing plants in Belarus to Russia’s north-west ports. With that, Russia has basically provided Belarus with tariffs equal to tariffs in Baltics.

The first container train headed for Riga departs from China

On Thursday, 20 October, Latvian Transport Minister Uldis Augulis, representatives from LDz and YXE International Container Train, multiple Chinese officials and Latvia’s ambassador in China Maris Selga saw off the first test container train from China to Riga.

Customs officials intercept hashish shipment worth EUR 2 million

Latvian State Revenue Service’s Customs Police intercepted and confiscated a shipment of more than 200 kg of hashish worth EUR 2 million, as journalists were informed by SRS Customs Police Director Kaspars Podins on Thursday, 20 October.

SA: Riga Freeport has only realized one of five of our recommendations

Latvian State Audit follows the development of the largest investment projects especially carefully, because the state does not seem to handle them all that well. Krievu Island project is one of the largest investment projects, because there is European Union finances invested in it...

Job seekers in Lithuania want Western salaries, employers dumbstruck

Although Lithuanian labour market is in desperate for workforce, but those willing to toil will nod to a job offer only if the pay is really big. So big that the country‘s hirers feel like grabbing their heads upon hearing the candidates‘ salary expectations.

Overall government budget decreased in 2015

In 2015, the general government budget deficit amounted to EUR 309.0 million or 1.3% of the gross domestic product, whereas the general government consolidated gross debt amounted to EUR 8 846.3 million or 36.3% of the GDP.

SP: claims about Motorola’s murderer are an attempt to show Latvia as the enemy

Latvian Security Police views claims that Donetsk military commander Arseny Pavlov, aka Motorola, was allegedly killed by a hired killer from Latvia named Marks Ozolins is nothing more than yet another attempt at information war aimed to demonstrate Latvia and its citizens and enemies.

Estonian President Kaljulaid not to ask state to pay rent

Estonia’s new President Kersti Kaljulaid will not ask the state to pay rent for using her home unlike the former head of state Toomas Hendrik Ilves did.

Every third coin with Milda’s image has made its way to Europe

Every third euro coin with Milda’s image has found its way to Europe. The proportion of those coins in Latvia is 71% of all euro coins in circulation, according to monitoring data compiled by Citadele Bank’s CBL Cash Logistics service.

Estonia plans to increase female proportion in military

Estonia has announced plans to triple female involvement in the country’s Defence Forces and to expand the list of units accessible to woman soldiers by 2018.

Pre-paid mobile card users to be registered as part of a plan to reduce grey economy

At the meeting of state secretaries on 20 October, a proposal was presented from the transport ministry to begin registration of mobile pre-paid card users.

Next year’s budget plan and other decisions viewed by Saeima this week

On Thursday, 20 October, the Saeima will gather for an extraordinary meeting, during which deputies will discuss the next year’s budget plan and 57 associated legal drafts.

European Space Agency attempts to re-connect to its Mars probe

The European Space Agency has lost contact with its Mars probe on October 19 shortly prior to its planned landing on the planet.

Klauss withdraws from SRS personnel selection process

Kristaps Klauss, executive directors of Latvian Forest Industry Federation, has decided to withdraw from State Revenue Service’s personnel selection process.

Lembergs to continue testifying in court at the end of October

Aivars Lembergs, who is accused of serious crimes, will continue testifying in his own criminal case on 31 October, as confirmed by Riga Regional Court’s press-secretary Raimonds Locmelis.