Myths of Unmanned Aerial Systems

The association of drones or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles,  to the military and enthusiasts doesn’t tell the whole story.

A drone  also known as an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) or sUAS – Small unmanned aerial system; is a term coined in the fields of aviation and space. In the most simple terms, it is an Non-piloted aircraft (No Human Pilot On Board), often used to mitigate safety risks and Hazards for tasks dangerous to Persons or pilots, Power Transmission and Distribution systems is one such use case. They can be used for many purposes including photography, surveying, Search and Rescue, Hazardous materials situations, Agriculture and asset management.

In reality, businesses across the entire economic landscape have adopted drone use to enhance their operations by gaining actionable data at a lower overall cost of time and man power. To date they have been Adopted by farmers, architects, Insurance Providers and emergency services, companies who are benefiting greatly from the adoption of  these unmanned systems. You’ve most likely seen footage acquired by a Drone on your evening news Broadcasts As Costs are rising for TV Stations.

With their unlimited potential to elevate performance and deliver timely data, unmanned systems are changing the way the world does business. Accurate, repeatable, Data and analysis is acquired faster and at a lower cost.

Drones are unregulated and spying on Me

Just because recreational use of drone technology is growing in popularity doesn’t mean it is all fun and games. The FAA requires all unmanned systems to be registered.

UAV’s or Drones used Commercially are required by the FAA to be flown by FAA Certified Remote Pilots In Command ( Title 49 Part 107 )

Additionally,  Title 49 of the United States Code includes a plethora of regulatory measures to ensure safety and standards for the use of drones. Certified Remote Pilots In Command Carry FAA Certification Identification with them at all times.

Non Certified Commercial use of a Drone or UAV carries heavy fines. As an Example, say a Real Estate Agent were to have a Property shot for a listing and the person flying the UAV was not Certified. The pilot would face fines of $1,100.00 per occurrence and the Company would face $11,000.00 in fines. Our National Airspace is regulated for a reason – Safety.

It is interesting to note what a human looks like from 100 feet AGL (Above Ground Level) let alone higher altitudes; suffice it to say that a particular persons face or attributes are not identified from such a height.

In Fact, Artificial Intelligence or the programs you use on your computer daily are more invasive than a UAV 100 feet or more above you. If your interested, Look at Companies like Google and Facebook’s A.I. Features. Is their Face Recognition software “amazing” to you?

FAA regulations have always prohibited unauthorized drone use in Secure or critical infrastructure areas and these regulations continually evolve. Their are No-Fly Zones across the Country, Airport surroundings would be one example. Commercial use is also restricted by regulations. Recreational drones must be kept at established distances from buildings and crowds or people in general not part of the flight operation, and there are hefty penalties for violations.

But be advised, more and more Companies and Agencies are employing the use of Drones for Detecting power line conditions, Searching for Missing Persons, Following Construction site progress, Roof Measurements and conditions etc. Even your Homeowner Insurance Company uses Drones for evaluation and Claims Adjustments.

Here again, many Insurance carriers advise their customers to have a UAV property evaluation done on their own for documentation and proof of assets. Examples would be Fencing, Sheds, Furniture etc.

Public Safety in the National Airspace is the Primary concern for the FAA and our Lawmakers. Rest assured that UAV’s are under regulations just like General Aviation Aircraft.