FAA: Please don’t shoot down any drones

Over in America, the FAA has been forced to release a statement in response to a proposed ordinance under consideration in the tiny farming community of Deer Trail, Colorado, that would encourage hunters to shoot down drones. Under the proposed ordinance, Deer Trail would give $25 hunting permits to hunters to shoot down drones and then reward them with $100 when a valid (drone) hunting license and identifiable pieces of a drone are presented.

Resident Phillip Steel authored the proposal (more or less symbolic) and has told the media he has 28 signatures on a petition or roughly 10% of the town’s registered voters. Under Colorado law, local officials must formally consider the proposal at a meeting next month and they would have the option of either adopting the ordinance or putting it on the ballot in an election this fall.

However, the FAA warned that a drone:

…hit by gunfire could crash, causing damage to persons or property on the ground, or it could collide with other objects in the air. Shooting at an unmanned aircraft could result in criminal or civil liability, just as would firing at a manned airplane.

Steel dismissed the FAA’s warning plus there are dozens of other laws being introduced across the country aimed at curbing the use of the unmanned aircraft or drones.

Meanwhile, the FAA is working on regulations to integrate drones into the skies and Congress has given them until 2015 to develop the necessary regulations, but the agency is behind schedule. Once the drone regulations are in place, thousands of drones could take to the skies – something that concerns privacy advocates.


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