Drone use is growing in Japan as in many other nations. The new law, passed by the parliament in June 2019, seeks to rein in growing use of unmanned aerial vehicles.

“We believe operating drones after consuming alcohol is as serious as (drink) driving,” said Japanese transport ministry official.

People who will be found under the influence of alcohol while flying a drone could receive a fine of up to 300 000 yen ($2 800). It covers drone weighing more than 200g (7oz) and also bans certain areas from flying a device.

The new regulation also levies fines on operators who perform dangerous stunts with their drone. They can face up the fines up to 500 000 yen ($4 700).

Also, the pilots face restrictions on where they can fly their unmanned aircraft under the new law. For now, drones are banned from flying within 300m ((85ft) of Japanese armed forces, US military personnel and other defense facilities without permission.

Pilots can flying their drone in Japan without a license but they must abide by series of regulations including:

  • avoiding airports
  • avoiding crowded areas
  • only daylight flying, restricted at night
  • staying below 150m
  • keeping the device in sight at all times