Just yesterday, the President of the United States, Donald Trump signed a memo directing the Department of Transportation to develop a plan that makes commercial drone flying easier in the US airspace. This initiative will surely excite companies like Amazon and 7-Eleven, where they can freely deliver packages via these unmanned aerial vehicles.
Drones—officially known as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS)— have shown their worth in farming, insurance, oil and gas inspections, and aerial photography. They take on tasks that are time-consuming and even dangerous for humans, like when they were used to aid search and rescue efforts during Houston’s Hurricane Harvey.
The Federal Aviation Administration, which creates rules for everything overhead, values safety above all else. It’s got a good thing going with commercial aircraft, and drones could easily mar its nearly perfect record. That’s why commercial drones must currently kowtow to rigorous regulation.
This newly created Unmanned Aircraft System Integration Pilot Program will have state, local, and tribal authorities on how to craft rules for drones that satisfy everyone.