General Safety Guidelines for Flying UAS

Any person who operates UAS shall observe the following general safety guidelines, unless otherwise permitted by CAD.

1. Where you cannot fly

(i) UAS shall not be flown in the vicinity of an airport and aircraft approach and take-off paths, which include:

  • Areas within 5 km of Hong Kong International Airport;
  • North Lantau coastal area;
  • Coastal areas from Tai Lam Chung to Tsuen Wan and Tsing Yi Island;
  • Victoria Harbour and its coastal areas; and
  • Shek Kong area.

(ii) UAS shall not be flown over populated and congested areas.
(iii) UAS shall not be flown over, or close to, any object, installation or facility that would present a risk to safety in the event of damage due to any impact by the UAS, or in such a manner that the good order and discipline and control thereof may be or may likely be jeopardized.

2. Good Choice of Flying Sites

A good choice of flying site not only minimises the possibility of an accident but also enhances the pleasure of the flying experience.

Here are some tips to help you choose a good site. A good site should be:
(i) clear of persons, vessels, vehicles or structures;
(ii) away from helicopter landing pads;
(iii) clear of any power sources such as power lines, transformer stations, pylons, and transmitter towers etc., which might cause radio interference;
(iv) flat enough to enable safe take-off and landing; and
(v) free from visual obstruction, so that the operator can see the UAS in flight at all times.

3. Altitude

The altitude of operations shall not exceed 300 feet (~90 m) above ground level.

4. Time of Operations

The operations of UAS shall be conducted during daylight hours only.

5. Weather Criteria

(i) UAS shall only be operated under good visibility and weather conditions.
(ii) UAS shall not be operated when Rainstorm Warning, Tropical Cyclone Warning or Strong Monsoon Signal is in force.

6. Heavy UAS

Except with Civil Aviation Department's endorsement, heavy UAS weighing more than 7 kg (without its fuel) is not allowed to fly in Hong Kong.

7. Control of UAS

The UAS operator shall be on site and keep the UAS within Visual Line of Sight (VLOS) during the period of the flight. Operating within VLOS means that the UAS operator is able to maintain direct, unaided (other than corrective lenses) visual contact with the UAS, and is able to monitor the UAS flight path in relation to other aircraft, persons, vessels, vehicles and structures for the purpose of avoiding collisions.

8. Safety Check on UAS

The UAS operator shall perform a safety check on UAS (including its fuel or lithium batteries) before operating UAS.


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For further enquiries, please contact the Air Services and Safety Management Division of CAD at