Filed Under:Carrier Innovations, Technology Solutions

Micro-drones to have their own rules of the road under FAA plan

A water drone demonstrates maritime salvage by flying a lifesaver to a boy in the water, at the world's largest watersports trade fair BOOT in Duesseldorf, Germany, Friday, Jan. 22, 2016. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
A water drone demonstrates maritime salvage by flying a lifesaver to a boy in the water, at the world's largest watersports trade fair BOOT in Duesseldorf, Germany, Friday, Jan. 22, 2016. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. government wants to create a new category of “micro” drones that are built with materials that won’t harm people in a crash, opening the door for more widespread uses in crowded places and other sensitive locations.

The Federal Aviation Administration on Wednesday announced the formation of an industry advisory panel to help it draft the requirements for micro drones, according to a press release.

New micro category won’t have a weight limit, so long as the devices can’t hurt people

“The department continues to be bullish on new technology,” Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in the release. “We recognize the significant industry interest in expanding commercial access to the National Airspace System.”

The committee must finish its recommendations by April 1 in an attempt to speed the development of the new category, the agency said in the release. “The short deadline reinforces our commitment to a flexible regulatory approach that can accommodate innovation while maintaining today’s high levels of safety,” Foxx said.

Regulations in development

The FAA is separately finishing a set of regulations for other drones that still weigh less than 55 pounds (25 kilograms). The new micro category won’t have a weight limit, so long as the devices can’t hurt people.

Under current rules and those anticipated under the small-drone rule expected later this year, unmanned vehicles can’t be flown over people or near buildings and vehicles. The new category would allow for far more uses, both commercially and for recreation.

Related: Toy drones pose greater risk to planes than birds do, study says

Have you given us a Like on Facebook?

Copyright 2017 Bloomberg. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Related

Your kid just got a drone. Should you get insurance?

As drone registration increases, observers predict that some states will require recreational drone operators to carry insurance coverage, much like...

Featured Video

Most Recent Videos

Video Library ››

Top Story

10 red flags that could signal fraud for vehicle accidents

Serious injuries rarely arise from minor incidents.

Top Story

17 keys to improving your bottom line

Follow these steps and the benefits could extend beyond 2017.

More Resources

Comments

eNewsletter Sign Up

Carrier Innovations eNewsletter

Critical news on the latest tech solutions, information security, analytics and data tools and regulatory changes to help decision-makers at insurance carriers keep their business thriving – FREE. Sign Up Now!

Mobile Phone

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.