FAA to streamline drone permit process

The Federal Aviation Administration, the US agency that regulates the law of the skies, indicated this week that it is streamlining its process for approving the use of some small unmanned aerial vehicles in the domestic airspace for certain commercial activities like filmmaking, farming, and utilities inspection.

While the FAA’s complete set of rules on domestic drone operation will not likely be finalized within the next calendar year—this despite the fact that Congress created a framework for the FAA to grant permits for small commercial drones in low-risk situations in 2012 with passage of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act—the agency has indicated that it will take steps to permit some small-scale commercial drones sooner than anticipated.

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