Tags: Amazon | FAA | drones | rules | delivery

Amazon Raises Objections to the FAA's Drone Proposal

By    |   Monday, 16 Feb 2015 12:27 PM

Amazon has already taken issue with the new proposed regulations the Federal Aviation Administration put forward Sunday for the use of commercial drones, according to the UK's Guardian newspaper.

Last summer, Amazon formally requested permission from the agency for large-scale testing of delivery drones called Prime Air. But under the new proposed rules, which put an altitude limit on drone flights of 500 feet and forbids the carrying of third-party packages, the Amazon delivery service would not qualify.

Nevertheless, under the proposal, thousands of businesses could receive clearance to fly drones in two years. The long-awaited proposed rules would require operators to pass a written proficiency test, register the drone, and pay roughly $200 in fees, The Washington Post reported.

FAA administrator Michael Huerta told the Guardian in a statement, "We have tried to be flexible in writing these rules …We want to maintain today's outstanding level of aviation safety without placing an undue regulatory burden on an emerging industry."

But the position did not mollify Amazon, and the company issued a strong statement saying it would challenge the rules.

"The FAA needs to begin and expeditiously complete the formal process to address the needs of our business, and ultimately our customers," an Amazon spokesperson told the Guardian.

"We are committed to realizing our vision for Prime Air and are prepared to deploy where we have the regulatory support we need."

Critics of the proposed rules say the FAA has not adequately accounted for the advances in navigation software that took place over the last two years while they were considering the proposals.

"We're putting forward what we believe to be the safest possible approach at the moment, but of course we look forward to hearing back from the public," Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told reporters Sunday, according to the Post.

Under the proposed regulations, business would be permitted to fly drones only during daylight hours, and would have to remain within eyesight of the operator on the ground at all times, a stipulation which is incompatible with Amazon's proposed program.

The Post said, however, that the rules are expected to be modified and loosened over the coming decade as drone technology advances.

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Amazon has already taken issue with the new proposed regulations the Federal Aviation Administration put forward Sunday for the use of commercial drones, according to the UK's Guardian newspaper.
Amazon, FAA, drones, rules, delivery
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2015-27-16
Monday, 16 Feb 2015 12:27 PM
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