FAA Part 107 has made it even easier to Fly
Legally in the USA under 14 CFR Part 107. It's what we have all been
FAA Automatically Grants "blanket" COA'S -
As of March 23, 2015, the FAA will automatically
grant "blanket" COA's for flights at or below 200 feet to any UAS
operator with a Section 333 exemption, provided the aircraft weighs less
than 55 pounds, operations are conducted during daytime Visual Flight
Rules (VFR) conditions and within visual line of sight (VLOS) of the
pilots, and stay certain distances away from airports or heliports.
FAA Grants UAV Permits for Agriculture & Real Estate Companies -
The Associated Press reports that on Tuesday, the FAA issued exceptions
to the commercial UAV ban, permitting the monitoring of crops and real
estate use for aerial photographs of properties for sale. This is the
first time permits have been granted to agriculture and real estate
Deploys the RDASS Q1000 UAV -
HSE announces the deployment of the
new RDASS Q1000 4 rotor electric UAV. The RDASS Q1000 series is
designed to meet the hi-tech needs of the user at a price to meet any
city or county budget.
Chief Will Johnson announced that the Federal Aviation Administration
has given the city permission to get the rotors turning on the police
UAV drone project.
Supreme Court & The
4th Amendment - The US
Supreme Court has held that individuals do not generally have
Fourth Amendment rights with respect to aerial surveillance. Can the
lower courts or State, county, city municipalities outlaw the use of
UAV's for law enforcement?
UAV FAA Regulations
- For more
than five decades, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has
compiled a proven track record of introducing new technology and
aircraft safely into the National Airspace System (NAS).
The Department of Transportation is reviewing whether the FAA has the
authority to require drones be registered at their point of sale,
Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told CBS News on Friday.
“That’s what we’re looking at, the question is what can we do on our own
and where do we need Congress to intervene,” said Foxx. “The
administration has an interagency group working on this, that includes
the Department of Homeland Security and other departments that will be
focused on this.”
Requiring people to register their drone at the point of sale would
provide “at least some ability to track it back if we find that they are
violating some FAA rule,” Foxx said. “That’s just one example of the
type of thing that we are exploring.”
Currently, drones are considered hobby aircraft and are exempt from
registration because they are supposed to be operated below 400 feet. As
CBS has reported, airspace rules are being widely violated. As first
reported by CBS News, a record of at least 650 drone sightings have been
reported by pilots so far this year. That’s compared to 238 in all of
“The FAA needs the ability to set clear rules for when and where
consumers can fly drones, require manufacturers to install basic
technological safeguards and ensure consumers receive safety
information,” said Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, who has
introduced a bill to regulate drone use. The near tripling of
aircraft-done encounters number “should sound the alarm,” she said.
In a statement to CBS News, Brian Wynne, president and CEO of the
Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International, called for better
enforcement of existing rules.
“Unmanned aircraft systems shouldn’t fly close to airports, or manned
aircraft or above 400 feet,” he said. “These are common-sense
guidelines, but many new UAS enthusiasts aren’t taking the time to
understand where they should and shouldn’t fly. Any individual who
misuses UAS technology, or uses it in a careless and reckless manner,
should be held accountable. The FAA needs to enforce its existing rules
if a UAS endangers manned aircraft or people on the ground. ”
One the biggest challenges to the drone issue is catching the operator.
“While we can identify a drone in the air, tracking that drone back to
who is controlling it is an enforcement problem that we have,” Foxx
Foxx said there are, in fact, at least federal two teams studying the
drone issue. In addition to the inter-agency team that includes
Transportation Department officials, DHS officials and the national
security world, the Department of Transportation has its own working
group studying what action it can take immediately. Foxx says he’s
hoping to hear the findings of the DOT team in weeks, not months — but
bottom line, Foxx said, is that enforcement is coming.
“We’ve assembled an internal team to spend a lot of time and energy
looking at our authority to figure out, you know, what is the most
aggressive way that we can deal with this issue,” said Foxx.
Stricter enforcement of drone laws will be a move away from an almost
exclusive FAA focus on educating drone operators about the rules. Since
2011, the agency has issued just five fines with three more pending for
drone use. Another 22 investigations remain open.
Foxx expects drone manufacturers will step up their education efforts
and says the agency is looking at geofencing as a possible remedy
manufacturers could build into their devices. Geofencing would be
software limiting how high a drone could fly and how close it could get
to restricted airspace, including airports.
“Geofencing has its benefits and, if manufacturers want to incorporate
geofencing into their software, we support them. But as attractive as
technology solutions may be, they are no substitute for education,” said
Wynne. “The operator is responsible for the safety of an aircraft,
whether it’s manned or unmanned.”
In an on-camera interview Tuesday, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta
called the at least 13 incidents of drones disrupting wildfire
firefighting efforts in California a “game changer.” He confirmed that
discussions about stronger enforcement and the potential need for new
regulations are underway. He added the conversation includes law
“We are looking at all of the above,” he said. “Let’s go back to few
years ago — we had a significant problem with lasers around airports, so
we joined together with our law enforcement partners to address lasers
being pointed at airplanes. That’s what we are doing with unmanned
aircraft, bringing together all of our law enforcement partners.”
Huerta was referencing the 2014 FBI effort to crack down on laser
strikes against aircraft that has resulted in some arrests.
The latest effort, he said, incorporates “bringing together all of the
industry who is trying to find ways to safely integrate unmanned
aircraft, working with our field teams who are responsible for enforcing
aviation laws, and reaching out to the public to make sure they know
this is an extremely unsafe thing to be doing.”
Despite that FBI crackdown, laser strikes reported by pilots are on pace
to set a new all-time record. As of July 17, there had been 3,051
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