(Bloomberg) -- Reports of safety incidents involvingcivilian drones have surged to an average of 250 a month, leadingto a federal "emergency" action to approve drone flights inrestricted areas, according to a government notice seeking newprocedures for the craft.

There is so much pent-up demand for obtaining special permissionto fly drones in restricted airspace, that the Federal Aviation Administration says itcan’t keep up. The FAA says drone users are flying without approvalbecause of the delays.

"The time necessary to process these requests has resulted in anincrease in safety reports due to non-compliant operations," theagency said in its notice.

Safety incidents up

Drone safety incidents are up compared to last year, according toFAA’s notice. Reports of drones flying improperly or getting tooclose to other aircraft are averaging 250 a month, this year,up by more than 50% from last year. They averaged 159 per monthfrom February through September 2016, according to the FAA.

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