The commercial use of drones has been officially allowed by the FAA.
Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International chief executive, Brian Wynne, stated just how important the decision was, but it doesn’t mean that you’ll suddenly see hundreds of drones in the skies.
There are requirements for all those interested in becoming drone pilots, including aeronautical exams. So far, 3,351 people have signed up for the first exam, which is on Monday morning at 8am sharp.
Mark Dennehy of the Computer Assisted Testing Service has said that there is certainly plenty of “excitement,” with plenty of industries signing up for this first exam. Dennehy’s company is the administering the test.
There are many benefits to drones in the skies. They allow people to take photos and videos without all the usual expense. They allow for farmers to monitor crops and construction companies to monitor sites. People can take surveys and search and rescue is made easier.
While drones are allowed, there are rules to follow. Drones cannot be used at night or over areas not involved in the operation. They must also remain under 400ft when flying, and be less than 55lbs in weight. They should always be in the sight of the operator.
There are currently 3,000 businesses with exemptions from the government to fly.
The new rules make it easier to process requests. There’s no longer the need for a pilot’s license, which was a problem for many: it’s expensive and time-consuming, with many skills not applicable to drone flying.
There are some limitations that are going to hinder some companies, like those wanting to use them for deliveries. That means no packages will be dropped off instantly just yet. That is still being worked on.
Those who want to fly outside of the rules will need to apply for a waiver, which is possible. There are also changes within the FAA to regulate the new technology that grows every single day.
Wynne says that it is a major step in the mentality of the FAA. There is finally the exception that people can’t be everywhere at once, and the drones could actually help the public and various industries.