FAA Updates Drone Waivers to Boost Safety and Broaden Operations

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has introduced a series of drone waiver updates aimed at improving safety and expanding operations. These updates are a product of a collaborative effort between public safety stakeholders, various companies, and the FAA itself.

Drone as a First Responder BVLOS Waiver

One of the most significant updates is the new Drone as a First Responder (DFR) Beyond Visual Line of Sight () Waiver Template. This notable change simplifies and speeds up the BVLOS waiver approval process from over six months to a mere few days. This waiver can be accessed here.

Wildfire Red Flag Warning SGI Waiver

In light of increasing incidents, the FAA has also established a new Wildfire Red Flag Warning SGI Waiver. This permits the issuance of a (TFR) for true BVLOS operations during pre-wildfire reconnaissance, which is crucial for detecting and preventing disastrous fires. More information about emergency waivers can be found here.

The SOSC can be reached by phone at 202-267-8276 (monitored 24 hours/day) or by email at 9-ator-hq-sosc@faa.gov.

Obstruction Shielded (OS) Waiver for Part 107 operations

Moreover, the FAA has introduced an Obstruction Shielded (OS) Waiver for operations. It permits BVLOS flights for Part 107 remote pilots, with the condition that flights must be conducted within 50 feet of the highest natural or manmade obstacle. This waiver is beneficial for both public safety Part 107 and commercial Part 107 remote pilots. To apply for this waiver, go to the FAA Drone Zone.

In response to confusion regarding the OS Waiver, the FAA, in collaboration with DRONERESPONDERS, will hold a webinar on June 14 at 4 p.m. ET. Registration for this webinar is available here.

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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of DroneXL.co, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and EVXL.co, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ dronexl.co or @hayekesteloo.

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