As of September 2016, CASA introduced a number of requirements that are called Standard Operating Conditions; these apply to almost all operations, not just the excluded category. These conditions are defined as:

  • Not above 400ft AGL; and
  • During daylight only; and
  • Not within 3NM (5.5km) of a controlled aerodrome; and
  • Not over people (or populous area); and
  • Not with 30m of people; and
  • Line of sight only; and
  • You must not fly in restricted or prohibited airspace; and
  • Can only operate one RPAS at a time; and
  • Must not fly over an emergency declared area; and
  • You must not operate your RPAS in a way that is hazardous to other airspace operators;


As of October 2017, these have been extended with the introduction of a legislative instrument (Instrument CASA 96-17 Direction – operation of certain unmanned aircraft) to include:

  • Not within 3NM of a non-controlled aerodrome if you are aware that an aircraft is operating from it;

Without a radio and appropriate training, it is impossible to know when aircraft are operating to and from an aerodrome. We offer a course for Excluded Category that provides you with the required knowledge to be able to operate safely in the Excluded Category and Standard Operating Conditions.


These standard conditions apply to all drone (RPAS) operations, including the majority that are conducted even if you have an RePL or operate under an ReOC. It is possible to gain an exemption (or an instrument) that allows you to operate outside these standard conditions and allow you to conduct operations such as at night, above 400ft AGL or within 3NM (5.5) of a controlled aerodrome. The process to gain one is can be read about in a future blog post!


If you have any questions, of have any ideas of what you would like to see in future blog posts, send us a message!