Drones’ exponential growth from amusements to functional equipment

Drones have had an exponential growth from amusements to functional equipment used by government, business, and individuals.
The FAA continues to debate on how they can safely introduce UAVs/drones into the national airspace system. While toy and model aircraft pilots
have been largely unrestricted and safe for years, it now feels that they are being treated unfairly by the FAA,
who are mandating registration fees for UAVs/drones that meet a certain weight criterion.
Matt McFarland reported in May 2017 the following:
A Washington, D.C. court ruled Friday that the FAA drone registration rule violates the FAA Modernization and
Reform Act, which Congress passed in 2012. Hobbyist John Taylor argued successfully that he should not
have to register because the act states that the FAA “may not promulgate any rule or regulation regarding a
model aircraft.”
Since December 2015, hobbyists with drones weighing between 0.55 pounds and 55 pounds have had to
register drones with the FAA. More than 820,000 operators have registered since then. The process can be
completed online, and there is a $5 application fee.
The FAA said in a statement that it launched registration to ensure drones are operated safely and don’t pose
security or privacy threats. The FAA also said it is considering its options and response.
The FAA now has two potential paths forward, according to Anne Swanson, an attorney at Cooley and aviation
regulation expert. The FAA can appeal to all of the judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit,
which is called an en banc review. (The decision was made by a three-judge panel.) (McFarland, 2017, para. 1-

Does this new rule make it safer for the public?
Should the FAA create additional rules on top of this one?
Is the FAA being fair to previously unregulated toy and model aircraft pilots?

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