The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) granted Skyward, A Verizon company, a temporary waiver that allows company pilots to fly the Percepto Sparrow drone from their homes to inspect critical communications infrastructure near the Big Hollow wildfire in Washington. The waiver permits operations 24 hours a day, with less than 3 miles of visibility, and no pilot or observer on site.
From August 31 to September 3, the State of Washington used a drone to monitor the Skagit Wildlife Area habitat collecting imagery of about 1,200 acres of tidal marsh habitat.
Update: the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service reached out to DroneXL saying that they were not the project agency as previously stated, and that they did not circumvent the DOI drone prohibition. They informed us that instead, the State of Washington was the project agency. The article is updated accordingly.
The Centralia Police Department is continuing to search for a 93-year-old man reported missing earlier this week. Drones will be used in the search efforts.
Washington State University has used drones to deter birds in trials. Hovering unmanned aerial systems or drones over fruit blocks such as this vineyard in 2018 near Prosser reduced visits from birds by a factor three to five.
WiBotic announces today that the company has raised $5.7M to expand wireless drone charging business with new product offerings and enhanced customer support. WiBotic’s CEO Ben Waters plans to grow the sales team over the next few months.