Home Tag "UAS"

FAA Announces Drone Registration, But Further Regulations Still Needed

By Leischen Stelter
If you unwrap a drone this Christmas, before you take it out for its maiden flight you must first register the aircraft with the government. Starting on December 21, individuals who own a drone—more accurately called an unmanned aircraft system (UAS)—will be required to pay to register the aircraft with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). While registering aircraft may be a first step towards regulating these devices, this doesn’t begin to address the issues of where and how drones can be operated, nor who’s going to enforce legal drone operation.

FAA Addresses Threats of Drones to the Nation’s Airspace

There are more than 100 sightings or close calls between aircraft and drones every month. Pilots of both planes and drones are lucky that, to date, there hasn’t been a midair collision. AMU faculty member Anthony Galante, who is also a trained airline pilot and the director of training for the Unmanned Safety Institute, discusses why drones make him nervous every time he flies. Read more about the government's effort to regulate recreational drones and some of the specifics that still must be answered to keep the nation's airspace safe.

Drones: Friend or Foe of Firefighters?

On July 12, a civilian-operated drone forced firefighters battling a 35-acre wildfire in Southern California to ground supporting air tankers. This was the fourth such incident in a month where a drone disrupted firefighting efforts in California. These civilian-operated drones pose significant dangers for firefighting operations.

However, the use of drones by the fire service holds many potential benefits. “Drones would be a generous increase in our capabilities regarding communication, safety, and command and control,” said Captain Peter Jensen, a 26-year wildland firefighter with the Ventura County Fire Department in California. Learn more about how unmanned aerial systems (UAS) could assist firefighters fight wildfires.

Integrating Drones into Disaster Response Operations

On April 25, a massive 7.8-magnitude earthquake ripped through the heart of central Nepal. The resulting devastation crippled the region, razing entire villages and cities. As with any natural disaster, the main challenge for search and rescue teams is safely locating and rescuing people who have been injured, trapped in debris, or cut off from urbanized areas. However, a series of aftershocks coupled with Nepal's mountainous landscape and poor infrastructure made it extremely difficult for rescue teams to reach impacted areas. Read more about how unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly known as drones, can be extremely beneficial to rescue operations and why U.S. public safety agencies should be pushing for federal regulations to allow them to use drones for disaster response.

Court Rules on Civilian Drones Used to Record Police

Unmanned aerial systems (UAS), more commonly known as drones, are increasingly popular devices used by citizens and law enforcement agencies alike. However, the regulations about operating drones remain undefined by the court system and the FAA. Police agencies around the country are evaluating and adopting new policies about how they operate drones as well as how they interact with citizens using such devices. Read about a recent court decision involving a man using a drone to record an active accident scene. What are the impacts of this ruling on police agencies?

FAA Releases Policies for Unmanned Aerial System Use in the National Airspace System

This January, a personal unmanned aerial system (UAS) crashed on to the White House lawn. While the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) intended to bring forward new regulations for the public and commercial use of UAS in 2015, this incident seems to have accelerated the timetable. On February 15, the FAA released proposed rule changes. What are the key components of the new proposed regulations and how could it impact law enforcement agencies across the country?