Nobody likes too much Government intervention, however, with the number of “near misses” between UAVs (drones) and commercial aircraft on the rise, not to mention the privacy concerns, it was only a matter of time before the rules get stepped up. the next step may likely be a move towards licensing and/or certification and may not be a bad idea!
The FAA proposal of updated rules and regs offers safety rules for small UAS (under 55 pounds) conducting non-recreational operations. The FAA is also asking for comment about how the agency can further leverage the UAS test site program and an upcoming UAS Center of Excellence to further spur innovation at “innovation zones.” Some of the changes include:
- A small UAS operator must always see and avoid manned aircraft. If there is a risk of collision, the UAS operator must be the first to maneuver away.
- The operator must discontinue the flight when continuing would pose a hazard to other aircraft, people or property.
- A small UAS operator must assess weather conditions, airspace restrictions and the location of people to lessen risks if he or she loses control of the UAS.
- A small UAS may not fly over people, except those directly involved with the flight.
- Flights should be limited to 500 feet altitude and no faster than 100 mph.
- Operators must stay out of airport flight paths and restricted airspace areas, and obey any FAA Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs).