Hobby drone supplier fined US$2.9m for RF infringements

Friday, 24 July, 2020

Hobby drone supplier fined US$2.9m for RF infringements

US online hobby equipment supplier HobbyKing has been fined US$2,861,128 by the FCC for marketing drone transmitters that did not comply with licensing rules.

The infringing devices provide an RF video link between transmitters on unmanned aircraft systems and ground-based operators.

Following complaints to the FCC, an investigation found that dozens of devices marketed by the company transmitted in unauthorised bands (including designated amateur radio bands) and, in some cases, operated at excessive transmission power levels.

Such unlawful transmissions have the potential to interfere with important government and public safety services like aviation systems and weather radar systems.

In response to the complaints, the FCC issued a formal citation to warn the company that it must comply with these requirements. Following further complaints, the Commission ordered the company to provide information on its marketing of AV transmitters, yet HobbyKing provided no further response, as required by law. The Commission proposed the fine in 2018 and adopted it on 23 July 2020.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/New Africa

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