Dayton Company Gets Federal Drone Use Waiver

Dec 11, 2014


The Federal Aviation Administration has granted a Dayton company an exception to the current ban on drones not for government or recreational use.

Lewis Wallace of member station WYSO in Yellow Springs reports.

Right now you can fly a small drone for fun, but not for business—that is, until the FAA puts out some general rules.  
But Dayton-based consulting firm Woolpert is one of just four companies around the country that just got special exemptions to that ban.  
Matt Hutchinson, a scientist at Woolpert, says the company will start using 15-pound remote-control planes to monitor things like water quality, and oil and gas rigs.  
MH: We’re the first mapping and survey company in the nation to be able to provide that.  
The exemption will let Woolpert fly drones only in rural parts of Ohio, and each specific project also has to get approval.  
The FAA has been hung up on figuring out all the details of allowing this—privacy and safety are among the major issues. The agency says a set of rules for small drones should be released for public comment soon.