FAA: New Drone Flight Restrictions

The Federal Aviation Administration announced that drones will be prohibited from flying over federal prisons and Coast Guard facilities. The FAA flight restrictions will take effect July 7, 2018, at over 19 prisons and 10 Coast Guard facilities. The purpose of the restrictions is to keep drone flights outside of a 400-foot radius of federal facilities. Operators who violate the flight restrictions may be subject to enforcement action, including potential civil penalties and criminal charges including up to a year in prison.

It is the widespread availability of commercial drones that pose the greatest threat. There are more than one million federally licensed drone operators, and most of them fly by the rules, but not everyone. That being said, law-enforcement and national security officials added “prison breaks” as a potential ill use.

Drone incidents at prisons have been on the rise. In July 2015, a fight broke out at an Ohio prison when a drone dropped tobacco, marijuana, and heroin to an inmate. In July 2017 there was an escape from a South Carolina prison, where an inmate chopped his way through a fence using wire cutters that prison officials suspect were dropped by a drone. The inmate was captured 1,200 miles away in Texas. In September 2017, Arizona prison officials said a drone carrying drugs and cellphones crashed in the prison yard.

Most of the danger from the commercial drone boom here at home has been in the category of nuisance offenses. Under current law, hobbyists and commercial users must keep unmanned aircraft below 400 feet, and avoid flying within five miles of an airport to avoid endangering commercial aircraft. Even small drones can disable a passenger jet by getting sucked into and destroying a jet engine. Still, some recreational drone users ignore the law. In the first nine months of 2017, there were 1,696 drone sightings in illegal airspaces. The FAA expects the problem will get worse as the number of drones is estimated to triple to 3.5 million by 2021.


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Individuals piloting drones for commercial purposes must pass the FAA Remote Pilot in Command  Exam in order to obtain a certificate.
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Blood Delivery: Drones in Emergency Health Care

In May of 2018, the FAA is reviewing 150 proposals for the use of Drones in the healthcare field. One exciting proposal lays out plans to use drones to deliver blood during an emergency. This could revolutionize the healthcare field.

Right now, hospitals use a courier service, but the process can be slow.  Depending on the time of day, courier availability and traffic conditions, a delivery can take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes. With a drone, it will take ten minutes or less! That is a big difference with the potential to impact many lives.

Right now, the focus is on drones delivering blood but, once this process is perfected, drones can be used to deliver supplies after natural disasters or to remote areas where transit is generally slow. Medical drone deliveries could save countless lives all over the world.

It's proving the sky is not the limit.


ARE YOU INTERESTED IN OBTAINING A REMOTE PILOT IN COMMAND CERTIFICATE?

Individuals piloting drones for commercial purposes must pass the FAA Remote Pilot in Command  Exam in order to obtain a certificate.
Certified Training Institute offers online video exam prep to ensure you pass the exam on your first try!

Drones for Builders, Contractors & Real Estate Agents

Who would have thought a toy would become a powerful tool for both Real Estate Professionals and Builders?

How long would it take to measure every corner on the outside of a home being built? Every window and door opening, just for starters? You could fly a UAV and map the dwelling in 1 hour, then post process in your office later with millimeter accuracy.

During excavation you have holes dug and dirt moved, but how much?  Drones enable you to map the site in less than an hour and determine how many cubic meters were added or removed. Pre-map the site before excavation is ever performed to see where to store the soil. Depending on your flight overlap, you could get your measurements down to one inch or less.

Real Estate Agents, do you have a custom home you're showcasing and want to sell your services better? Using a Drone captures the creative mind of those looking to buy. It also engages them to reach out to your company which can accelerate sales. Just imagine viewing a new property through aerial footage. Wouldn't it be beautiful? Think about the endless marketing possibilities for this type of videography and photography. Drones will allow potential buyers to view the photos or video to get a feeling for the size, layout, architecture and the land surrounding the home.


ARE YOU INTERESTED IN OBTAINING A REMOTE PILOT IN COMMAND CERTIFICATE?

Individuals piloting drones for commercial purposes must pass the FAA Remote Pilot in Command  Exam in order to obtain a certificate.
Certified Training Institute offers online video exam prep to ensure you pass the exam on your first try!

Sales Tax Laws Could Affect Your Drone Purchase (and more)

In a recent article on The Hill, organizations are urging Congress to reject proposed legislation that would require out-of-state online retailers to collect sales tax. This comes as the online sales tax issue has come back into the spotlight due to a case before the Supreme Court.  Another proposed law could exempt certain drones from sales tax altogether.

Currently, if you make an online or phone purchase from a company that does not have a point of presence in your state, you are not required to pay sales tax. Supporters of the legislation say that the global sales tax measure is important because it provides a level playing field for brick-and-mortar retailers and allows states to collect sales tax that is owed to them. Further to this, State and Local governments have been pushing for a greater ability to collect sales taxes from internet purchases, as the growth of e-commerce has made it harder for governments to reach their revenue targets. They could cut their expenses, but that is unheard of in government budgets. Some online retailers that once fought to keep "no taxes" on their online sales have now come out in support of the online tax. Amazon is one example of this.

The company wants this new tax IMO because it has grown exponentially, with points of presence in most states and is now required to collect sales tax. For example, if you purchase something from Amazon and Amazon has a warehouse in your state, then you will pay your states sales tax on the purchase. If you purchase something on Amazon from a merchant that is selling on Amazon but does not have a point of presence in your state, then you do not pay sales tax. In this example, Amazon loses the sale, but gains commissions from the merchant using their systems. In the past, Amazon was against all sales tax but has since changed its position. The company negotiated with state governments to collect the sales tax in exchange for bigger tax incentives and to build and have a point of presence in their state.

Now that they have lost their online sales tax advantage, they want to regain that advantage over their online merchants and other small retailers not selling on Amazon by forcing all of the small retailers to collect the sales tax. Once accomplished, they can continue to dominate the small retailer with lower prices.

Submitted by Certified Training Institute Drone Instructor Greg McMaster

 


ARE YOU INTERESTED IN OBTAINING A REMOTE PILOT IN COMMAND CERTIFICATE?

Individuals piloting drones for commercial purposes must pass the FAA Remote Pilot in Command  Exam in order to obtain a certificate.
Certified Training Institute offers online video exam prep to ensure you pass the exam on your first try!

Attention Drone Operators – LAANC Goes Live In April

LAANC Goes Live In April

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released a statement announcing its plans for expanding the drone airspace authorization program.

Under the current Part 107 drone rule, operators must secure approval from the agency to operate in any airspace controlled by an air traffic facility. In order to facilitate those approvals, the agency deployed the prototype Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) at several air traffic facilities last November. The purpose is to evaluate the feasibility of a fully automated solution enabled by data sharing.

Based on the success, the agency has announced that on April 30th it will be conducting a nationwide beta test. During this beta test, LAANC will be deployed incrementally at nearly 300 air traffic facilities covering approximately 500 airports. The final deployment will begin in September.

Drone operators using LAANC can receive near real-time airspace authorizations. This dramatically decreases the wait experienced using the manual authorization process and allows operators to quickly plan their flights. Air traffic controllers can also see where planned drone operations will take place. The release goes on to say that beginning April 16, the FAA will consider agreements with additional entities to provide LAANC services. Currently, there are four providers: AirMap, Project Wing, Rockwell Collins, and Skyward.

Applications must be made by May 16. This is no standard government acquisition; no Screening Information Request (SIR) or Request for Proposal (RFP) related to this effort.

LAANC uses airspace data provided through UAS facility maps. The maps show the maximum altitude around airports where the FAA may authorize operations under Part 107. LAANC gives drone operators the ability to interact with the maps and provide automatic notification and authorization requests to the FAA. It is an important step in developing the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Traffic Management System (UTM).

For more information, visit www.faa.gov/

Submitted by: Certified Training Institute Instructor Greg McMaster


ARE YOU INTERESTED IN OBTAINING A REMOTE PILOT IN COMMAND CERTIFICATE?

Individuals piloting drones for commercial purposes must pass the FAA Remote Pilot in Command  Exam in order to obtain a certificate.
Certified Training Institute offers online video exam prep to ensure you pass the exam on your first try!

THINKING OF USING DRONES TO ENHANCE YOUR BUSINESS?

Commercial Drones or Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) must be operated in accordance with FAA operational rules.

What constitutes commercial drone use?

  • Any drone used to provide contract services, i.e. Industrial equipment or property inspection.
  • Selling pictures/videos taken from a drone.
  • Drones used to monitor the progress of your company’s work.
  • Using drones for professional services, i.e., security or telecommunications.

What are the requirements for commercial drone use?

Any company using a drone for commercial purposes must be at least 16 years old and hold a remote pilot airman certificate with a small UAS rating or be under the supervision of an individual with a remote pilot certificate, and pass applicable TSA vetting.

How do I obtain a FAA Remote Pilot Airman certificate?

Step 1: Pay the $5 fee and register any aircraft that weighs more than 0.55lbs.
Step 2:  Pass the $150 Small UAS Remote Pilot Exam – exam prep is available here.
Step 3: Pass a TSA background check
Step 4: File FAA Form 8710-13

Are there continuing education requirements for remote pilots?

Yes. Pilots must pass the $150 FAA Remote Pilot Airman exam every two years.

What are the requirements for the drone/UAS?

The drone must weigh less than 55 lbs and undergo a pre-flight check by the FAA Remote Pilot Airman certificate holder.

What are the commercial drone operating rules?

  • Fly under 400 ft above ground level unless you are within 400 ft of a structure.
  • Keep the UAS in sight of either the remote pilot in command or an observer
  • Fly during daylight hours or 30 minutes before and after official sunrise and sunset.
  • Fly at or below 100mph
  • Yield right-of-way to manned aircrafts
  • Do not fly over people
  • Do not fly from a moving vehicle in densely populated areas.


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