On June 21st, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released Part 107 to the FAA regulations regarding commercial operation of small unmanned aircrafts. Part 107 provides operating rules for drone operators who do not fall into Section 336 to operate the aircraft in the national airspace. Part 107 allows for drone operations if the drone is in line of sight, weighs under 55 pounds, hits speeds less than 100 MPH, and flies below 500 feet. Additionally, Part 107 requires that the ‘pilot in command’ either hold a remote pilot airman certificate or be under the direct supervision of a person who does hold a remote pilot certificate. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said, “We look forward to working with the aviation community to support innovation, while maintaining our standards as the safest and most complex airspace in the world.”

However, the rule does not contain any regulations regarding privacy issues related to the use of drones. The FAA advises drone operators to check local and state laws before collecting information through remote sensing technology or photographs. The rule takes effect in late August of this year. To view the FAA’s summary of Part 107 click here.

Part 107 does not apply to model aircrafts. Model aircraft operators must continue to abide by the requirements of Section 336 of Public Law 112-95, which will now be codified in Part 101, including the requirement that they be operated only for hobby or recreational purposes.