Amid the prevalence of civilian use of drones, authorities introduced a ban as remote-controlled vehicles increasingly pose a risk to aviation and use by terrorist organizations. A ban came into force Sunday for drone users who are not registered by authorities to prevent unauthorized drone flights.
General Directorate of Civil Aviation (SHGM) announced that unregistered drone users will be subject to fines up to TL 17,000 ($6,081). Users who intend to use drones weighing between 500 grams and 25 kilograms are required to sign up with a database of the directorate.
Users will be mandated to receive special permission from authorities to fly drones in areas with flight restrictions made for security reasons, such as near airports and military bases. Unauthorized drones will be confiscated and their users will be fined. Drone use in closed spaces is allowed without registration.
Drones have previously endangered flight safety, especially last year in Istanbul. Several civilian drones used to capture the images and videos of airport activities in the city were spotted on multiple instances at the city's Atatürk Airport by pilots. Its use also raised privacy questions when a drone was discovered taking images at a girls' dormitory in Istanbul. Experts warn easy-to-use aerial vehicles are also popular among terrorists for reconnaissance prior to terror attacks.