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Commercial Drones (Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)) - Limited Use

Remember a few years ago, when drones were being publicized as the future wave for delivering pizzas or packages. There was even a scramble with the big potential of using them for roof top home inspections. What happened to that promise by Amazon to deliver packages by drone?

While UAS (drones, or unmanned aircraft system) have some practical applications and there are a few home inspectors who use them, their lack of use is due to a combination of physics and regulation. All commercial pilots of an UAS, must follow the regulations of the Federal Aviation Administration Part 107.

There are many rules that are part of Part 107. Some of the rules to be a commercial flier include:

  • Obtaining remote pilot flying certification from the FAA

  • Weighing less than 55 pounds

  • Having the pilot maintain unaided visual sight of the UAS while flying it.

  • Operation during daylight hours only.

  • Piloting age of 16 or older.

  • Obey and observe FAA notices, included restricting drones from flying within 5 miles of airports.

As UAS usage increases, many states are adding their own laws to regulate them.

So, how does Amazon cost effectively deliver packages to your doorstep if the pilot must be within visual sight of the UAS? Isn’t Midway or O’Hara airport within 5 miles of the home inspection? How many are going to stop and take the required training class, in order to become certified, in an area with limited use given the current laws.

As a result, although drones are cool, not as many home inspectors will be offering UAS rooftop inspections today.

Be advised that the rules and regulations are changing as time goes on.

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