Costa Rica: Drones en Centroamérica

Last Updated: 19 October 2016
Article by Gabriela Alfaro

Las aeronaves pilotadas a distancia (RPAS por sus siglas en inglés), popularmente conocidas como drones, están revolucionando el mundo de la aeronáutica.

Estos dispositivos pueden ser adquiridos por precios sumamente accesibles y son utilizados para una amplia gama de actividades. Por esta razón, se ha consolidado su popularidad en el mercado y de ello deriva la necesidad de que sean objeto de regulación; en donde se limite el uso de los mismos cuando concurran situaciones que arriesguen la seguridad de las personas y de la aviación en general.

Bajo el entendido de que su uso significa un obstáculo en el espacio aéreo, desde noviembre de 2014, el Instituto Nicaragüense de Aeronáutica Civil, mediante Resolución No. 34-2014, prohibió el uso de estos equipos en el territorio nacional cuando operan a una elevación mayor a los 100 pies de altura con 30 metros horizontales de desplazamiento. Dicha Resolución inclusive prohíbe el ingreso de drones al territorio nicaragüense.

En una línea similar, Costa Rica, desde mayo de 2015, por medio de la Circular de Información Aeronáutica (AIC), serie C, número 05, establece las restricciones y limitaciones de operación para este tipo de aeronaves. En principio, se impide su operación en zonas catalogadas como prohibidas o restringidas, en el espacio aéreo controlado, en un radio de 8 kilómetros alrededor de un aeródromo y por encima de los 400 pies sobre el nivel del terreno en el espacio aéreo no controlado. También se prohíbe durante la noche o sin condiciones meteorológicas visuales, y en zonas de aglomeraciones de personas, aun cuando sea al aire libre, o cuando el vuelo se realice lo suficientemente cerca de otra aeronave que genere un peligro de colisión. No obstante, algunas de estas limitaciones tienen excepciones en caso de contar con el permiso específico de la Dirección General de Aviación Civil de Costa Rica (DGAC-CR).

Dicha AIC es una medida tomada por las autoridades costarricenses con la intención de mitigar los riesgos a la seguridad aeronáutica. A sabiendas de que no constituye una medida integral, la DGAC-CR ha trabajado en una Directiva Operacional, la cual pretende derogar la AIC vigente. No obstante, la misma ha sido revisada y modificada en distintas ocasiones debido a la disconformidad empresarial, sector que considera los requisitos excesivos y las tarifas para certificarse desproporcionados a la actividad que se realiza.

En El Salvador no existe legislación que aplique específicamente para drones, pese a diversas iniciativas que sugieren su regulación mediante reforma a la Ley Orgánica de Aviación Civil. Por su parte, en Honduras, la regulación de los RPAS se encuentra contemplada en la reforma a la Ley de Aeronáutica Civil, la cual actualmente se encuentra en el Congreso Nacional para su discusión y aprobación. La reforma plantea, en términos muy generales, establecer restricciones de uso sobre determinadas zonas y regular las condiciones de iniciación, aprendizaje, prácticas de vuelo y operación de las RPAS por medio de la Regulación de Aeronáutica Civil (RAC) respectiva.

Actualmente, Guatemala tiene la normativa más completa en Centroamérica. Desde el 2013, a través de la Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil (DGAC-GUA), se emitió la Regulación de Aviación Civil de Guatemala (RAC) 101 "Regulación de Aeronaves No Tripuladas, Aeronaves de Modelismo y Fuegos Artificiales", que establece, entre otros aspectos, los requisitos para la operación de los drones.  

La DGAC-GUA aprueba aquellas áreas en las cuales los drones pueden operar teniendo en cuenta la seguridad de la navegación área. Por ello, se encuentra prohibida su operación si representan un peligro para otra aeronave, persona o propiedad.

De esta forma, en Guatemala no se puede operar una aeronave no tripulada por encima de 400 pies sobre el nivel del suelo en el espacio aéreo controlado. No obstante, se acepta en un área aprobada para la operación de aviones no tripulados de la misma naturaleza que la aeronave, o de acuerdo con una autorización del control de tránsito aéreo. Tampoco se permite operar una aeronave no tripulada por encima de los 400 pies dentro de 3 millas náuticas de un aeródromo, excepto cuando la operación de la aeronave está respaldada por un Certificado Operativo (CO), o si se ha emitido un permiso especial para una operación específica. Además, se encuentran prohibidas las operaciones durante la puesta y la salida del sol, excepto en aquellos casos en que se encuentre iluminada alguna parte de la superficie de la aeronave o pintada de forma que represente una advertencia visual.

Las operaciones que se realizan pueden ser regulares si son amparadas bajo un CO, u operaciones no regulares o esporádicas, o si cuentan con permiso de vuelo. En el caso de que los dispositivos sean utilizados en actividades comerciales, es menester contar tanto con un CO como con un certificado de explotación.

Es claro entonces que no existe homogeneidad a nivel centroamericano en cuanto a la regulación de las aeronaves pilotadas a distancia. Si bien Guatemala lleva la delantera, lo cierto es que en el resto de la región se mantiene a la libre o se limita sin mayor fundamentación técnica, desconociendo las necesidades  del mercado. Es necesario que los países revisen las regulaciones existentes o la falta de ellas, para que permitan a los drones posicionarse como los nuevos actores de la aviación, manteniendo los estándares de la seguridad aeronáutica y velando por la protección ciudadana y su entorno. 

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Mondaq Advice Centre (MACs)
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

Disclaimer

Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

Registration

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.