The NTSB Wants to Change the Definition of Drone Accidents

The NTSB Wants to Change the Definition of Drone Accidents

DJI job cuts drone accidents

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) wants to change the definition of drone accidents, or “unmanned plane accident” so as to embody smaller business drones working in larger danger environments.

Currently, pilots flying beneath Part 107 are requested to report drone accidents to the FAA inside 10 days if an accident meets the definition of 14 CFR 107.9, and includes:

 (1) critical harm to any individual or any lack of consciousness; or (2) harm to property (aside from the unmanned plane) except “the price of restore (together with labor and supplies) doesn’t exceed $500, or the truthful market worth of the property doesn’t exceed $500 within the occasion of a complete loss.”

Reporting to the NTSB is at present required when the accident ends in dying or “critical harm,” or when the drone weighs greater than 300 kilos and has sustained substantial harm.  Now, the NTSB seeks to revise that definition to replicate the present drone trade.  As the FAA strikes in direction of airworthiness certification for drones, the NTSB needs to switch the weight-based definition, as a substitute referring to unmanned plane with an airworthiness certificates or airworthiness requirement.  “The weight threshold is now not an acceptable criterion as a result of unmanned plane programs (UAS) beneath 300 lbs. are working in high-risk environments, comparable to past line-of-sight and over populated areas,” says the discover of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) revealed within the Federal Register.

The new definition will cowl accidents that will happen throughout superior operations like drone supply: the NTSB says that the their investigative course of may assist enhance drone security.  “… a substantially-damaged supply drone might uncover vital questions of safety, the investigation of which can improve aviation security via the impartial and established NTSB course of,” says the discover. “This proposed definition change will deal with a UAS with airworthiness certification or airworthiness approval in the identical method as a manned plane with airworthiness certification or airworthiness approval, thereby enabling the NTSB to right away examine, affect corrective actions, and suggest security suggestions.”

More correct reporting may assist the drone trade by highlighting how few drone accidents truly happen.  Brendan Schulman, Vice President of Policy and Legal Affairs on the world’s largest drone producer, DJI, commented:

“While drones have the perfect security report in aviation, with zero deadly accidents over an estimated 88 million flights per 12 months, DJI, as one of many solely drone corporations to have been a celebration to an NTSB drone investigation, at all times welcomes the security classes that may be realized from an evidence-based investigation of any vital incident.”

Comments will shut on the NPRM July 20, 2021.

Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, an expert drone providers market, and a fascinated observer of the rising drone trade and the regulatory atmosphere for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles centered on the business drone house and is a global speaker and acknowledged determine within the trade.  Miriam has a level from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of expertise in excessive tech gross sales and advertising and marketing for brand spanking new applied sciences.
For drone trade consulting or writing, Email Miriam.

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