Saturday, March 11, 2023


Where Are We Today
Quartzsite Arizona

What did I pass? The Transport Canada Pilot Certificate for (RPAS) Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems, Visual line-of-sight (VLOS) .

My Certificate
Why do I need this? In 2019 Transport Canada came out with new regulations for drones, (RPAS), whether they are quadcopter, helicopter or fixed wing aircraft, weighting more than 250 g and up to and including 25 kg.

The test for the Basic Certificate is 35 multiple choice answer questions that you get 90 minutes to do it in. It is done on-line at a cost of $10.00. you need a 65% grade to pass. If you fail, you have to wait 24 hours before you can take it again and you can take it as many times as it takes to get a passing grade. Most of these questions have nothing to do with RPA flying and more to do with flying full-scale aircraft.

Another Nice Landing
There is an advanced test that allows for more freedom to where you can fly, it is 50 questions, 60 minutes to do it and you must take a flight review with a certified reviewer.

As a member of MAAC, Model Aeronautics Association of Canada, I was exempted from those regulations if I was flying from an approved MAAC flying field. Due to an error in site approval of some fields, which MAAC was trying to correct, Transport Canada took away our exemption and suspended all out door flying until we obtained our pilot certificate. All sites have to be reapproved before we can fly at them.

There are restrictions that come with the Basic Pilot Certificate. To name a few, fly no higher than 400 feet above ground level, fly 100 feet away from spectators, no closer than 3 nautical miles from an airport and 1 nautical mile from a heliport. Also, every RPA has to be registered with Transport Canada, it will be assigned a registration number which must be affixed to that aircraft and every aircraft that you own, cost of $5.00 per.

I don’t disagree with some regulations, but their tests need to be more in line with the type of flying we are involved in.

 I do not mind telling you that after looking at all the study material, AIM  and the CAR, I was very nervous at whether this old dog was going to be able to pass this test, even taking it multiple times if necessary. I surprised myself and gave a huge sigh of relief when I passed it on the first attempt with a 74% grade.

Quartzsite Desert flyers Field
Hoping now that our field back home gets re-opened by the time I get back. I will now start registering my airplanes and set up the mandatory log books that I need for each airplane and transmitter.

We are three weeks away from leaving the park and starting our trek home. This past Wednesday, I conducted our last Quartzsite Desert Flyers meeting for this season, the next meeting will be in November.

Thanks for following along. I know this post may be boring to some, but interesting to others. Until the next time, take care.