- The task force will be composed of 25 to 30 representatives from the UAS and manned aviation industries, the federal government, and other stakeholders (including Academy of Model Aircraft, Helicopter Association International among others). The group will advise the Department on which drones will be exempt from registration due to several factors including level of safety risk.
- The task force also explore options for a system that would make registration less burdensome for commercial UAS operators. Current commercial operators must file a Section 333 exemption with the FAA.
- The task force may make additional safety recommendations as it deems appropriate. Secretary Foxx directed the group to deliver its report by Nov. 20.
The announcement comes as the FAA has been receiving numerous receives reports of potentially unsafe drone operations. Pilot sightings of drones has doubled between 2014 and 2015. The reports ranged from incidents ranging from a drone crash at the US Open in September, flights near airports and others interfering with wildfire operations.
While the task force is formed, the FAA will continue its aggressive education and outreach efforts, including the “Know Before You Fly” campaign and “No Drone Zone” initiatives with the nation’s airports. The agency also will continue to take strong enforcement action against violators. At the same time, it will continue working with stakeholders to improve safety to ensure further integration and innovation in this promising segment of aviation.
A lot of details remain to be seen on how this will affect drone operations in the United States. How do you think this will affect the industry?