Drone Photography and Video Rule Changes for 2021

People running a marathon

The drone industry has grown very rapidly and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has done a stellar job in responding to the changes in a timely manner. 

On December 28th, 2020 the FAA issued an Executive Summary Final Rule on the operation of small unmanned aircraft systems over people. Click here for a link to the Executive Summary.

The new rules will greatly expand the opportunities to capture stunning drone images and video. You can imagine how “Operations Over People” can be utilized for commercial purposes to capture events and create dazzling video productions at a fraction of the previous cost.

Under the previous rules, to operate at night of fly over people an operator would need to apply for a waiver from the FAA. The process is time consuming and requires extensive preplanning.

There are currently over 1.7 milliion drones registered with the FAA and 203,000 FAA-certificated drone pilots, and safety is the paramount concern. The new rules address these safety and privacy concerns while creating new opportunitiees for innovation in the drone industry. Prior to operating a drone under the new rules, pilots must complete ukpdated training on the new rules or pass an updated knowlege test. The test became available April 6, 2021.

There are still restrictions of course, and at Mermaid Hunter Drone Services we are vigilant about ongoing training and adherence to safety and rapidly changes rules and regulations.

Exciting changes are coming in the fall of 2022 as well when Remove ID comes into effect on September 16, 2022.  Remote ID will reduce risk and allow for more options by allowing drones to become fully integrated in to the national airspace system. It’s a huge leap in technology and has been in the works for some time.

Both the Operations Over People Rule  and Remote ID are available for public viewing on the Federal Register.

Kudos to the FAA for releasing these rules that ensure safety of the public but also give drone pilots the freedom and flexibility to innovate.

Contact us today for a quote on using drone video or photography for your next project. We’re here to help!

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