MAAC Exemption to new Canadian Aviation Regulations, Part IX (RPAS)

As you were informed earlier this year, MAAC leadership has been working with Transport Canada to secure an exemption to the new Part IX, Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) regulations. The intent of this exemption was that MAAC members would not be required to comply with the regulations in the new CARs, Part IX.

We are pleased to advise all MAAC members that after working with the regulator for over eight (8) months, the exemption was approved by Transport Canada on 17 May 2019 and takes effect on the same day as the new regulations.

The intent of this letter is to provide high-level information and guidance on the exemption and to provide members with a copy of the exemption itself. Additional guidance material will be provided in a separate document and will explain the exception in more detail including each of the conditions stipulated in the exemption.

The key message for all MAAC members, as stated above, is that with this exemption the new CARs, Part IX RPAS regulations, taking effect on 1 June 2019, DO NOT APPLY TO MAAC MEMBERS conducting operations in accordance with MAAC rules, procedures and safety guidelines, provided the conditions in the exemption are followed.

The exemption includes 15 conditions which must be complied with in order to operate under the exemption. Five (5) of these conditions apply to the organization and 10 apply to the individual MAAC member conducting the operation. It should be noted that the majority of these conditions are actions that are already taken by the organization and its members or are minor adjustments to what we already do on a daily basis.

A few additional points of interest are:

  1. As with the new regulations, the exemption uses the terms remotely piloted aircraft system (RPAS) and remotely pilot aircraft (RPA), as Transport Canada no longer differentiates between recreational (model aircraft) and non-recreational activities.
  1. The exemption applies to the operation, by MAAC members, of RPA between 250 grams to 35kg. Operations of RPA below 250 would fall under the new CARs Part IX regulations and are basically required to not operate in a manner hazardous to aviation. RPA above 35kgs will require an SFOC, which is unchanged from the previous regulations.
  1. This exemption has no expiration date. This means it remans in effect until:
    1. The date on which any of the conditions in the exemption are breached. If this occurs, the exemption is no longer valid for the person who has breached the exemption conditions. It does not mean that the exemption becomes invalid for all members or the organization.
    1. The exemption is cancelled by the Minister, in writing, should he believe that the exemption is no longer in the public interest or is likely to adversely affect aviation safety or security.
  1. It is strongly recommended that all clubs and members have a copy of the CARs, Part IX exemption, either a paper or electronic copy, readily accessible whenever they are flying, should a member from Transport Canada or the local police authority question what authority they are operating under. Clubs may also wish to pre-emptively engage their local police authorities and make them aware of the exemption as they may not have received information or training on the exemption.
  1. NAVCANADA has established a standardized set of processes for the coordination of operations in controlled airspace (Class C, D and E). These processes will be actioned through the local ATC facility. The NAVCANADA coordination package will be forwarded to all clubs and will be posted on the MAAC website.

We hope you find the above information beneficial. As stated above, additional information and the NAVCANADA controlled airspace coordination package will be forthcoming which will provide additional details on the exemption. should you have any questions. Once you receive and review the additional information documents, please contact your MAAC liaison to Transport Canada, Rodger Williams (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).


Please click on download able link to read details.

 Copy of regulaations:


Copy of letter explaining regulations:

Exemption Guidance Material