More than two years after deciding to embark on small parcel deliveries by drone, the giant online trading specialist, Amazon, will finally be able to develop their project, thanks to the green light recently obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Having received an experimental airworthiness certificate, Amazon will now be able to test their drone, and train pilots. Nevertheless, the drones will be restricted to daytime flights, at an altitude of less than 130 metres (400 feet), and at all times within sight of the operator, who must also be, at least, the holder of a private pilot's certificate.
Each month, Amazon will also be obliged to provide a detailed report to the FAA on the number of flights conducted, and pilots’ duty times, together with any malfunctions.
Over the last 18 months, the FAA has received a total of 342 requests similar to that of Amazon. To date, 48 companies have obtained approval for the use of their drones in the carrying out of agricultural analyses, infrastructural diagnostics and video recording.
According to the FAA 7,500 professional use drones will probably be operational throughout the US within the next five years.