0 Shades of Gray: FAA Seeks to Bust Myths Surrounding UAS

faaComplimenting my post last week about the FAA and UAS regulations, the Administration published a list of regulation myths – and countered them with facts. The following were key points I picked up:

  1. “There are no shades of gray in FAA regulations.” Commercial operations are not allowed under any circumstances unless authorized (on a case-by-case basis) by the FAA. This applies even to operations on private property or under 400 ft. As I laid out, only certified pilots are allowed to operate UAS and must obtain either an airworthiness certificate (civil use) of COA (public use).
  2. There are no guarantees that commercial UAS will be allowed starting September, 2015. The FAA does it’s best to dance around the anticipated date by reiterating a “safe integration” plan is in the works for next year. Interpretation of this is subjective at best. What happens on 09/2015 when the FAA says, “we are not convinced that UAS can be safely integrated at this time?” The realist inside me judges the FAA on their previous record, and so far, there has been nothing but delays. I’m a firm believer that the FAA will use any negative occurrence/event to justify why UAS are not “safe” enough to be integrated to the national airspace.
  3. The FAA is still overtly out of touch with the UAS industry. Assuming that there will only be 7,500 small commercial UAS by 2018 is a gross underestimate. There are likely 10,000+ (legally or not) UAS operating NOW.

The full list of UAS myths and facts can be found here.

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