On Friday, the U.S court of appeals for the DC circuit alters the previous rules and regulation from last year, which states the FAA cannot regulate small drones. The FAA win a legal victory in this recent hearing which upholds the Drone hobbyists and grants administration authority over consumer UAVs, a step which anticipates implementing additional restrictions on a flight.
Moreover, on Friday’s hearing, the U.S court observes that Section 336 doesn’t mean that FAA would give up its regulatory administration for always, in fact, the judge Merrick Garland wrote in a statement:
“Section 336 also provides, however, that nothing in it ‘shall be construed to limit the authority of the [FAA] Administrator to pursue enforcement action against persons operating model aircraft who endanger the safety of the national airspace system.”
First, in 2012, Congress authorized the law which puts emerging drone technology under FAA, a bit later in 2015 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) passed a final rule which states several requirements for the drone that weighs 55 pounds and more than about half a pound. After that, state and government were imposing their own rules which instigated a hobbyist named John Taylor to file a lawsuit against the head of FAA concerning the aviation agency didn’t have jurisdiction over the matter and they have regulated new registration requirements and limitations.
According to Bloomberg report, Friday’s ruling is at least a partial win for companies including Alphabet Inc.’s Project Wing and Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Air, which have urged regulators and lawmakers to impose additional standards on the millions of people who fly hobbyist drones. Such requirements are needed to ensure that it’s safe to operate the autonomous delivery systems they are developing, the companies say.
But in this recent hearing, the appeal court rejected Taylor’s request “Because the rule is within the agency’s statutory authority and is neither arbitrary nor capricious, the petition for review is denied,” Judge Merrick stated. Though, this decision will also be a victory for Google and Amazon as both the companies have been trying hard to get a permit for starting drone projects like Prime Air and Project Wing. As for now, the upcoming laws might include extra flight limitations and needs self-identifying beacons.