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FAA Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Rules for Small UAS Operations

Michael Huerta
Michael Huerta

The Federal Aviation Administration is seeking public comment on its proposed regulation framework for small unmanned aircraft systems that also includes an option for a flexible framework for future “micro” UAS.

FAA said Sunday the proposal covers safety rules for the nonrecreational use of small UAS, as well as altitude and speed restrictions, operational limits, operator certification and aircraft registration.

“We want to maintain today’s outstanding level of aviation safety without placing an undue regulatory burden on an emerging industry,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta.

The Transportation Department and FAA are asking the public to provide input on the inclusion of the flexible framework option and the potential ways that the UAS test site program can facilitate innovation.

The proposed rule requires UAS operators to maintain visible line of sight but allows suggestions on appropriate limits for beyond-line-of-sight operations.

It also highlights the role of operators in performing a preflight inspection of the UAS, avoiding contact with manned aircraft and assessing airspace restrictions and conditions around the flight area, including the weather, location of nearby people and potential hazards.

Operators are also required to take an aeronautical knowledge test and maintain a UAS operator certificate from FAA, the agency said.

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