Businesses across America were jumping for joy last month, as the new rules for the use of commercial drones were finally coming into effect. The rule, named ‘Part 107’, was designed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in order to address the growing demand for specific rules and regulations about the use of a drone for commercial purposes – this had never been formally addressed by the FAA before. These first of its kinds guidelines look to pave the way for many new, innovative businesses in America.
What are the rules?
The biggest (and most exciting for businesses) change in the part 107 rule is that Americans will no longer need to hold a manned aircraft licence in order to legally fly a drone for commercial purposes. Instead, they will need to take a multiple choice ‘aeronautical knowledge exam’. This is great news for companies that are looking to use a drone as quickly as possible, as many viewed the previous procedure long, arduous and hugely challenging. The FAA plans to open over 700 testing centres across America in order to facilitate these exams, a move which suggests their support to get new, would-be pilots legally qualified in no time at all.
Opening doors to innovation
Now, individuals are are able to gain the certification needed in order to operate a drone for commercial purposes much more easily than they did before Part 107 came into effect. This means that these newly qualified pilots can quickly integrate a drone into their business, or start up new businesses based around drone focused services. This can open up doors to innovation like never before. Of course, there are restrictions which can limit the extent of what these businesses used their unmanned aircraft for, but largely this simpler route of entry could be the turning point that could dictate the future of many industries.
Part 107 across the pond
In the UK, in order fly a drone for commercial use you must attend an Unmanned Aerial Qualification (UAQ) course, like those offered by us at UAVAir, before applying to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) for your Permission for Aerial Work (PfAW). While we offer fast-track training courses of just three days, this system is still largely similar to the American method of certification before the Part 107 rule came into effect.
Would you like to see a similar rule for UK airspace? Are you a UK based business that feels restricted by the current regulations? What do you think a similar ‘Part 107’ rule could mean for drone based businesses? We’d love to hear your thoughts.