Business and Commercial Use for Camera Drones
There seems to be some confusion about the commercial use of drones. They are rules and regulations but they are often hard to clarify in some areas so those gray locations can allow someone to get away with using them commercially.
That is because someone can legally use a drone for a hobby. They do have to keep it in sight of them at all times though. For example, someone that is going to take photographs can get terrific ariel shots with the use of a drone.
One way that people get around the regulations in place is by setting up a non-profit business or stating that they are a hobbyist. Both of these classifications allow them to operate drones without it being considered a violation of commercial use.
They are able to collect payments too. They have to do so in a manner that will classify them as donations though. While the FAA is aware of this, they haven’t made it a huge area of concern. They aren’t investing much time or effort in getting those practices to end. 17
The FAA regulations state that drones can’t be used for commercial gain. However, the US Congress has required the FAA to change this. Beginning in 2015, the FAA will have to allow drones into commercial airspace.
It was announced 12/30/13 by the FAA that six states of the USA as an example that the FAA will be able to develop testing sites for drones. These six states are:
The reasons that these locations were selected are due to the variations the offer. The FFA wants testing that includes different types of:
According to the FFA, they believe this is a huge step towards gathering sufficient and reliable data. They feel this information will assist them with creating the rules and regulations that will need to be in place for commercial drone use in 2015.
The testing sites are going to create quite a buzz about drones. They are also going to generate an undisclosed number of new jobs in those states. Not everyone is happy with this though. They want drones to be approved for commercial use without all the red tape of rules and regulations.
The FAA though seems to be taking all the heat when they aren’t the only ones with concerns. In fact, a survey in 2013 showed that 42 states agreed to bills being implemented in their states that restrict the use of drones. This mainly has to do with privacy concerns.
There are eight states that have already imposed such bills. They want to be ready for the FAA changes in 2015. It is expected that many more states will also be getting these bills acted upon and implemented before the commercial use of drones is accepted by the FAA.
Too Many Drones
One of the biggest worries that the FAA has about commercial use of drones is that there will be too many of them. There has been talk about using drones for fast deliveries by some of the larger retailers including:
This could literally result in hundreds of drones being out there flying around as the orders are in route to their destinations. This could dramatically increase too around the holiday season.
There are all things that the FAA has to be cautious about. They need to put rules and regulations into place that will ensure there isn’t chaos from the commercial use of drones.
The most common commercial ventures that you could see trying to get approved for drones and camera drones use include:
Insurance and Property Valuation
Oil and Gas Companies (Pipelines)
The experts believe that there will be growth in 2015 in the area of commercial use of drones. However, they believe lots of commercial entities are going to be disappointed and frustrated by the lack of freedom they have with it.
Manufacturers of Commercial Drones
From a manufacture’s point of view, the ability of commercial use of drones is very exciting. They have already started with development and promoting of what consumers can buy in this area. They are hopeful they can generate a great deal of profit by selling drones to the commercial sector.
Some of the top manufacturers for commercial drones include:
DJI Phantom – This is considered to be the first mass market drone. There are four configurations that consumers can pick from. They are all designed to be very simple to operate and they range in terms of the weight they can handle. The Quadrocopter is one that is getting a great deal of attention. They also offer the 2 Vision Quad.
Parrot – This is a very small drone with a configuration that looks very similar to a butterfly. It is also very cost efficient which is perfect for a business that doesn’t want a huge investment in this type of marketing as they aren’t sure what the return on it would be for them.
FAA Fight the Drones
The FAA isn’t going to give up without a fight though. In March of 2013, they appealed a Federal court ruling about the use of drones for commercial needs. The FAA is also not pleased that the charges against Matt Murphy in January of 2013 were dropped.
The charges against Murphy include a $10,000 fine by the FAA for wrecklessly flying a drone at the University of Virginia for a photography
shoot. The law dropped the charges as they stated there are no enforceable FAA rules and regulations at this time that apply. With this in place, the precedence in the court of law has been set. The FAA has to come up with some rules and regulations so that what they deem as violations can be prosecuted.
The outcome of the FAA appeal regarding the use of drones for commercial use as being legal will be one that is watched by many. There may be some compromises made in the end for all parties involved to be happy with the results.