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FAA Grounds Amazon’s Drone Delivery Ambitions

FAA Grounds Amazon’s Drone Delivery Ambitions

In a move that may well devastate whatever segment of the population that is desperately awaiting the day their packages are delivered same-day by an unmanned drone-craft, the FAA has indicated that such deliveries are likely to remain illegal for the time being, reports CNBC.

The re-iterated bad was released buried in a document released by the FAA on Monday in a request for comments on the commercial use of “model aircraft,” the term of art the FAA has assigned to drone delivery craft.

The federal guardians of the flight-ways have maintained since 2007 that commercial drone operation is illegal, however a federal judge ruled in March, however, that the FAA enacted the regulations illegally because it did not take public input before adopting the rules, which it is required to under federal law. Flight regulators have appealed this decision.

Brendan Schulman, the lawyer who convinced a federal judge to declare that the FAA regulations illegal, didn’t take the undercover release of the new regulation all that well “It’s a purported new legal basis telling people to stop operating model aircraft for business purposes,” he said, reports Arts Technica.

Singled out for special attention, as an example of an illegal program under the drone aircraft program is Amazon’s proposed drone delivery program.  While the FAA did not name Amazon Prime Air, they were specific enough in their prohibition that it would seem that they did everything but title it “Prime Air: Nope.”’

From the FAA doc: “If an individual offers free shipping in association with a purchase or other offer, FAA would construe the shipping to be in furtherance of a business purpose, and thus, the operation would not fall within the statutory requirement of recreation or hobby purpose.”

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