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Drone Investigation Statistics

Oscar made this Official Information request to Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand

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From: Oscar

Dear Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand.

I request the following information for the past 5 year period.

How many drone safety reports have been received.
A breakdown/summary for the reason of the safety report.
How many occurrence reports have been received.
A breakdown/summary for the reason of the occurrence report.
A breakdown/summary for the result of both reports (wrong information/warning/prosecution etc).
Number of drone related convictions and the conviction/sentencing result.

Yours faithfully,
Oscar

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From: Bridgette Chisnall
Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand

Tçnâ koe Oscar,

 

I acknowledge receipt of your OIA request to CAA for the following –

I request the following information for the past 5 year period.

How many drone safety reports have been received.

A breakdown/summary for the reason of the safety report.

How many occurrence reports have been received.

A breakdown/summary for the reason of the occurrence report.

A breakdown/summary for the result of both reports (wrong
information/warning/prosecution etc).

Number of drone related convictions and the conviction/sentencing result.

 

We received your request on 10 May 2022. We will endeavour to respond to
your request as soon as possible and in any event no later than 8 June
2022, being 20 working days after your request was received. 

 

If we are unable to respond to your request by then, we will notify you of
an extension of that timeframe. Your request is being handled by the OIA
Team. If you have any queries, please feel free to contact us at
[CAA request email] with the reference 22/OIR/230.

 

If any additional factors come to light which are relevant to your
request, please do not hesitate to contact us so that these can be taken
into account.             

 

 

 

 

Nâku noa, nâ

 

Bridgette Chisnall (she/her) | Official Information Coordinator

Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand | Aviation Security Service

Te Mana Rererangi Tûmatanui o Aotearoa  |  Kaiwhakamaru Rererangi

Level 8, Aon Centre, 1 Willis Street, Wellington 6011, PO Box 3555,
Wellington, 6140, New Zealand

(DDI) +64 4830 0528

Please note that I am currently working part-time, usually between the
hours of 8am – 1pm. For urgent requests please contact [1][CAA request email].

 

This e-mail (and its accompanying attachments) is intended for the named
recipient only and may contain information that is confidential and
subject to legal privilege. If you are not the intended recipient please
inform the sender and destroy the message. If you have received this
message in error you must not distribute or copy this e-mail or its
attachments. The Civil Aviation Authority accepts no responsibility for
any changes made to this message after the transmission from the Civil
Aviation Authority. Before opening or using attachments, check them for
viruses and other effects. This communication may be accessed or retained
for information assurance and cyber security purposes.

References

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1. mailto:[CAA request email]

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

hello Oscar
firstly – I am in no way affiliated with CAA or any other ‘drone related’ organisation

next – congrats on shining a light on all these ‘naughty’ drone fliers…

easy one first – prosecutions I know of… (I’ll comment on other punishments separately)
(source: www.districtcourts.govt.nz – search for ‘drone’, or…; but the case has to be listed)

2016-NZDC-16698-Civil-Aviation-Authority-v-Simon-Reeve
offences BEFORE the ‘New Rules’, ex August 2015
flying near fire-fighting helicopter, January 2015
two fines of $250 each

2018-NZDC-2246_New-Zealand-Police-v-Riquelme-Cruz
2018-NZDC-2286_New-Zealand-Police-v-Riquelme-Cruz
flying near and above fire-fighting helicopters, January 2018
forfeiture of drone – value around $1700
(the home occupier who started the fire, that burnt over 200ha, got a ‘warning’ from FENZ)

2020-NZDC-20911_Director-of-Civil-Aviation-v-Pitman
2021-NZDC-3157_Civil-Aviation-Authority-v-Pitman
collision with paraglider, February 2018
two fines of $500 each

2019-NZDC-16542_New-Zealand-Police-v-Heath
drone shot down by irrate neighbour, September 2018
discharged without conviction… – no, really!
this one is well worth reading, for all the mistakes leading to a dumb outcome…

note:
the near absence of prosecuted offences, and not all by CAA
the long time to reach a verdict and sentence (exception Cruz – tourist leaving NZ)
the paltry value of the punishments

so… clearly we need TIGHTER RULES! (said ironically, or paraphrasing CAA)

CAA come from a ‘self-reporting-for-safety’ mindset – think: helicopter doors popping open*

drones are flown by a huge range of people, some of whom are ignorant of, or willfully in breach of, any reasonable controls…

Allen

(* – ZK-HOJ, Wanaka, 18 October 2018
https://www.taic.org.nz/sites/default/fi...)

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

hello Oscar
firstly, again – I am in no way affiliated with CAA or any other ‘drone related’ organisation

next – ‘naughtiness’ by drone flyers… and, piloted aircraft too…

back in the ‘hey-day’, before Covid, I asked similar questions to yours
refer to my FYI requests, and CAA’s replies, for an idea of what is available* -

‘Aviation Safety and RPAS/Drones – Update 2’
08 August 2019
reply: Request 20 OIR 69 RPAS information 1 Jan 2018 to 31 July 2019.pdf

‘Aviation Safety and RPAS/Drones – Enforcement – Update’
08 August 2019
reply: RIU RPAS Investigations 20 OIR 70 Reynolds.pdf

my personal opinion is there is a huge level of ignorance, across all society
drone flyers are not all ‘experts on drone law’
the general public are even worse
the modelling community is little better (still antagonistic to foam planes and ARTF, and what’s ‘diversity’?)
even the aviation community is (or chooses to be) ignorant of model flying… or worse

examples:
report: ‘drones were making the reporters house vibrate’ – I LOVE this one

lots of ‘drones flying over the neighbours property’, and other vagueness

the aircraft that attempted to land at a CLOSED airstrip, being used for a drone event
- the strip was officially closed, NOTAM’d, and properly marked (big X’s) – no penalty tho’

the Ministry of Transport was claiming in 2017 over 280,000 NZ drone users (and 200,000 overseas users) – but by 2019 this was just ’77,000’ (Twyford)

* - the CAA information is suspect – I personally reported a flyer breaching three rules – but it’s not on the list

so, read the pdf’s, get info from CAA, but stay sceptical…

Allen

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

oh yeah – punishments…

no wonder I forgot – there’s so few!

two (2) drone flyer prosecutions, under the ‘New Rules’ from mid-2015

a dozen each per year of ‘Written Warnings’ and ‘Infringement Notices’
and for the same $$ as nearly killing (?) a paraglider pilot…

altho’ it mighta all changed since my mid-2019 data (writer pauses to listen for laughter)

Allen

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

I wonder what's more culturally offensive - a greeting from CAA without macrons, etc - 'Tena koe'

or the misspelt splodge that is -

" From: Bridgette Chisnall
Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand

May 11, 2022

Tçnâ koe Oscar,"

Link to this

From: OIA
Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand


Attachment 2022 05 31 Response to 22OIR230 SIGNED DIH.pdf
295K Download View as HTML


Kia ora Oscar,

 

Please find attached a response to your request for official information.

 

If you have any queries please feel free to contact me at
[1][CAA request email]

 

 

Nâku noa, nâ

 

Bridgette Chisnall (she/her) | Official Information Coordinator

Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand | Aviation Security Service

Te Mana Rererangi Tûmatanui o Aotearoa  |  Kaiwhakamaru Rererangi

Level 8, Aon Centre, 1 Willis Street, Wellington 6011, PO Box 3555,
Wellington, 6140, New Zealand

Please note that I am currently working part-time, usually between the
hours of 8am – 1pm. For urgent requests please contact [2][CAA request email].

 

This e-mail (and its accompanying attachments) is intended for the named
recipient only and may contain information that is confidential and
subject to legal privilege. If you are not the intended recipient please
inform the sender and destroy the message. If you have received this
message in error you must not distribute or copy this e-mail or its
attachments. The Civil Aviation Authority accepts no responsibility for
any changes made to this message after the transmission from the Civil
Aviation Authority. Before opening or using attachments, check them for
viruses and other effects. This communication may be accessed or retained
for information assurance and cyber security purposes.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[CAA request email]
2. mailto:[CAA request email]

Link to this

Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

interesting...
both the data, and the manner of CAA's reply...

I do hope you were not expecting '2. A breakdown/summary for the reason of EACH [my caps] safety report'...

but... as I kinda said, re punishments - 'not many, if any'...

keen to see your comments, Oscar
Allen

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

further thoughts – three points:

1) prosecutions – CAA lists one (1) each in 2016 & 2021

so that’s probably –
2016-NZDC-16698-Civil-Aviation-Authority-v-Simon-Reeve
flying near fire-fighting helicopter, January 2015 (‘Old Rules’)

and –
2020-NZDC-20911_Director-of-Civil-Aviation-v-Pitman
2021-NZDC-3157_Civil-Aviation-Authority-v-Pitman
collision with paraglider, February 2018

they haven’t included Riquelme-Cruz – that was a POLICE prosecution, so CAA ignore?
2018-NZDC-2246_New-Zealand-Police-v-Riquelme-Cruz
2018-NZDC-2286_New-Zealand-Police-v-Riquelme-Cruz
flying near and above fire-fighting helicopters, January 2018

have other prosecutions occurred?

2) Written Warnings, and especially Infringement Notices (fines), are no measure of guilt or offending – remember the phrase ‘innocent until proven…’

it is certain that Infringement Notices have been paid as ‘the path of least resistance’
to defend against an IN is surely more costly, more time consuming, and more involved

3) the information you have been given is interpreted from a data source I found questionable

just one example – timing of the occurrence:
(refer to my attached graph – Aug 2015 to Feb 2017 – 280 reports, 350 offences)

'daytime reports' (9am to 9pm) constitute only 13% of total, so 87% are ‘night flying’
yet night flying has only been reported 22 times - 8% of total
and, the 'witching hour' (12mn) is heavily over represented - 26% of all events

how would you even see a drone at night, especially when inside in winter?

(I found similar and other problems with later data, but that HDD died…)

in summary:
You really need to check and verify each and every reported occurrence
Some are valid; some are questionable; some are total nonsense

CAA cannot base policy on such a poor foundation

Allen

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Allen Reynolds left an annotation ()

seems I cannot attach a graph - see my OIA's...
Allen

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