UPS Looks To gain Government Approval For Advanced Drone Delivery Service
Hot on the heels of Uber’s food delivery service Uber Eats and Amazon Air, UPS joins the queue waiting for Federal Government permission to use advanced Drone technology to fly over populated areas and go about their deliveries.
UPS, like the other companies mentioned previously are trying to get a Part 135 certification under the Federal Aviation Administration to legally deliver via the air. Basically they will need to comply with the same safety regs as those flying planes….such s the possible fall out from any kind of accident. This means that despite the futuristic predictions of a sky soon filled with drones, the whole industry is very much within its teething stages.
UPS is creating a brand new subsidiary called UPS Flight Forward. Like all other companies that are investing in this new delivery tech, it is diverting funds and research to make sure they gain an economically viable foothold in what is estimated to be a $1.5 trillion industry by the early 2040’s.
The certification, should it be successfully granted, will then allow application for FAA-approved flight operations beyond line of sight, at night, and without limit to the number of drones or operators in command. Currently these operations are incredibly restricted.
Companies looking to utilize drone tech for their deliveries are facing a massive amount of government regulation that is really slowing down the process of getting this all successfully “off the ground”.
Many will be happy that there is a lot of very intrusive government hindrance. Arguing that protection of the people who will be in the flight path is more important than the industry itself. Quite what the risks are, however is not really known. This 2017 Pew Research Center survey showed that 54% of Americans are against drones flying over residential areas full stop. That leaves just under half who do not seem to be that bothered or concerned, or are perhaps pro the industry “taking flight”.
So Will Drones Be Delivering?
I would hope that sensible legislation and planning from local government, (we don’t want the drones themselves to be the victims of theft/sabotage or damage), and logical Federal regulation, we see drone deliveries happening as planned. A delivery service of this nature would be revolutionary, both with home shopping and environmental carbon reduction. Roads too could end up a lot freer.
As usual I think we are heading to a point where we will see whether we embrace future tech and look to make it work for us efficiently. Or do we stifle it and stop its ability to assist us due to over zealous governing of issues that could be resolved with decent planning and responsible legislation?
You can read more about Amazon’s recent conference where the mega company unveiled its new drone .
What do you guys think?