Washington, DC--The FAA finally came out with a proposed rule for commercial drone use. They were far less draconian and created a somewhat reasonable approach to regulation than expected by most observers.
The “FAA Guidelines for Model Aircraft” for non-commercial hobbyist fights will remain unchanged.
The new rule would make Electronic Drone News Gathering possible in most situations.
The period of public comment must pass and after some tweaking the final rule will be established. This could take up to three years. By then the technology will change for the better and this will be liberalized somewhat.
Below is the UAS (drone) Commercial Use Press Release for the Rule the FAA is sending out for public comment.
The FAA will require a minimal pilot UAS ground license testing requirement with recertification every two years.
No drone night flights.
No flying drones over the heads of people unless they are part of the shoot.
Drones must stay under 500 ft. maximum flight altitude.
Drones must yield to all manned aircraft.
Drone is not to exceed 55 lbs. in weight.
Maximum drone speed shall be 100 MPH.
Since public comment is required the news media clients must make their concerns known. Because of the rapid loss of TV and Newspaper consumers and budgets drones are a salvation as helicopters are the single largest cost to TV stations.
We can capture images without flying over the heads of people by shooting the scene from along side at a 45-degree angle. That angle also provides for better images. Remember the drone has the distinct advantage of flying at much lower altitudes than helicopters.
This is great news for TV and all news media organizations since they will be able to cover news from the air at a fraction of the cost of helicopters.
Until the rule becomes final commercial uses must still apply for waivers from the FAA. I suspect that that procedure will become simplified considering the new proposed rules.
Here is the FAA press Release: