Regulations around drone flight and piloting are changing every day, and usually it doesn’t make life easier for drone pilots.
But this change might be something that makes piloting a UAV that much easier – at least in controlled airspace. The Federal Aviation Administration in the United States has updated its rules for giving drones permission to fly in controlled airspaces and it makes it nearly instantaneous to obtain. The expansion of the Low Altitude Authorization and Capability (LAANC) system allows for aircraft that operate under 400 feet, such as drones, to be allowed to fly in controlled airspace as some 600 airports in the United States are covered by the standard. DPReview reports that this area covers some 2,000 square miles.
UAS service provider Kittyhawk company founder Josh Ziering said of the expansion, “The American drone industry needs a strong supply of drone innovators, entrepreneurs and hands-on pilots to continue its rapid growth…‘Drones are helping businesses, nonprofits, governments and researchers do their work better, faster, safer and cheaper, and accelerating those benefits requires a steady pipeline of talented drone enthusiasts who turn their recreational curiosity into a profession.”
As you can imagine, DJI, long a champion of consumer drone pilot rights, was thrilled with the changes.
DJI’s Vice President of Policy & Legal Affairs Brendan Schulman said, “Drones have earned an admirable safety record around the world, and the FAA has recognized that they may be operated safely in certain areas near airports by both professional and recreational operators.”
You can watch a video from the FAA outlining the changes by clicking here to head over to YouTube.
Do you pilot drones in the US? What do you think of the changes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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