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New Rules Allowing Small Drones to Fly Over People in U.S. Take Effect

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An aerial drone flies over downtown Reno, NV, during a NASA demonstration of its Unmanned Aircraft Systems Traffic Management platform.

Final Federal Aviation Administration rules allowing small drones to fly over people and at night took effect this week.

Credit: Bob Strong/Reuters

Final rules from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration that permit small drones to fly over people and to fly at night took effect April 21.

The rules also allow drones to fly over moving vehicles in some instances.

To address security concerns, remote identification technology (Remote ID) will be required in most cases so drones can be identified from the ground. Drone manufacturers have been given 18 months to begin production of drones with Remote ID, and an additional year has been granted to operators to provide Remote ID.

The rules do not require drones to be connected to the Internet to transmit location data, but they must use radio frequency (RF) broadcasting to transmit remote ID messages.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg called the rules "an important first step in safely and securely managing the growing use of drones in our airspace."

From Reuters
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