With an estimated 400,000 drones to be sold off the shelves this holiday season, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) task force recently released a list of recommendations for recreational drone use, which includes registering each drone with the FAA in a national database. While the FAA already has rules and regulations related to the use of drones for commercial purposes, the FAA is trying now to meet the growing concerns around recreational drone use and the ongoing safety hazards that these recreational drones pose to the public. So, if the FAA follows the task force’s recommendations, you will need to register your drone if it weighs anywhere from half a pound to 55 lbs., by submitting your names and addresses to the FAA’s national database. The recommendations also suggest at least a $25,000 fine for registration violations –however, that fine would be set in order to deter drug traffickers and tax evaders, but should not apply to users of small recreational drones, the task force said.
But privacy advocates, such as the Electronic Privacy Information Center, say that the FAA needs to require more than just name and address from the drone operator during registration, and should also require information about surveillance capabilities to protect the public from unwanted spying.
The FAA task force that submitted these recommendations was composed of 25 individuals from drone manufacturers to government officials. Now, the FAA will take these recommendations into consideration and then implement a final set of new rules regarding registration. We will keep you updated. Happy drone shopping.