Taupō District airfields and no-fly zones
Anyone wanting to operate a remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS) commonly known as a drone, needs to be aware there is a no-fly zone over a large part of the Taupō District - including all of Lake Taupō - as there are several aerodromes in the area.
Civil Aviation Authority rules do not allow drones to be flown within 4km of any airfield or aerodrome, unless certain conditions are met including approval from the aerodrome operator.
Aerodromes in the Taupō District:
- Lake Taupō Aerodrome (includes area above water and 4km buffer from shoreline)
- Taupō Airport
- Taupō Hospital Helipad
- Heli Adventure Helipad
- Centennial Park Aerodrome
- Tūrangi Aerodrome
Request approval to fly a drone
Anyone wanting to operate a drone in the Taupō area must request approval from the relevant aerodrome operator(s). All requests for approval are made through Taupō Airport.
Complying with Civil Aviation Authority rules
If you want to operate a Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS), commonly known as a drone, in the Taupō District you need to fully comply with the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand (CAA) rules.
The CAA rules include restrictions on various conditions of flight; including heights, weights, proximity to airfields and permissions required for flying over private and public property.
If you breach the CAA's drone rules you are subject to possible fines, criminal prosecution and confiscation of the aircraft. As a drone operator you can still face penalties even if you are unaware you are breaking the rules.
Getting consent from people and property owners
Another aspect of being compliant with CAA rules is ensuring you get permission from people and property owners before flying over them. Private property owners must give personal consent while in the case of public land, you will need to get approval from the relevant governing authority.
Flying a drone over Taupō District Council land
If you would like to fly a drone over Taupō District Council land, including reserves, you must apply for a permit.
The Civil Aviation Authority is responsible for investigating complaints about the dangerous use of drones.
If a drone flies above your property without permission and you feel your privacy has been breached, you can make a complaint to the Privacy Commissioner.
If a drone presents an immediate danger to public safety, contact the Police.