Senate President Koko Pimentel has sought a law regulating the ownership and use of drones by private persons to ensure public safety.
He recently filed Senate Bill No. 1723 regulating the use of drones by private persons whether used for hobby or commercial purposes.
“The same drones that are used for recreational and commercial purposes may be used to violate rights, exploited by terrorists, or pose a hazard to aircraft,” Pimentel said.
Under SBN 1723, private owners must register their drones. Failure to do so would result in the confiscation of the drone.
“Operating a drone for commercial purposes without a permit shall result in the confiscation of the drone and a fine of not less than P50,000 but not more than P100,000,” Pimentel said.
However, SBN 1723 exempts the government from such regulation to be crafted by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP).
“Over the last two decades, the use of unmanned aerial vehicles or drones have proliliferated in various sectors of society,” he said.
Drones are used for amateur photography, to increase crop production, and to conduct surveillance for military and law enforcement agencies, he said.
Pimentel added, “With the ubiquity comes the need for regulation.”