Rep. Sam Graves, R-Mo., left, with actor and pilot Harrison Ford at a forum of the House General Aviation Caucus. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
We spoke with Rep. Sam Graves, R-Mo., co-chairman of the House General Aviation Caucus and a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this week after he told an aviation industry conference in Washington about some of his misgivings about drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles.
For drone enthusiasts, Grand Forks, N.D., will be the place to be this week, as the state hosts its eighth annual summit featuring Federal Aviation Administration officials as well as speakers from Northrop Grumman and an array of smaller companies in the fledgling unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry.
Danny Ellis, a spokesman for an Ann Arbor, Mich., start-up called SkySpecs, who’ll be speaking at the summit, said his firm is developing small aerial systems “with a focus on advanced intelligence for applications requiring immediate obstacle avoidance. Our first market and customer is in wind turbine blade inspection.”
A technician for Deutsche Post DHL prepares a drone to be equipped with a package before a test flight in Bonn, Germany, in December. (Patrik Stollarz/AFP/Getty Images)
Sen. Edward J. Markey, D- Mass., has offered an amendment to the “minibus” appropriations bill that would essentially stop the Federal Aviation Administration from implementing, until certain privacy protections are in place, a final rule to allow for civil operation of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) .
The amendment also would impose certain privacy requirements on drones used by police departments and other law enforcement agencies.
The Container covers the transportation community in Washington.
Tom Curry (@TCurry_Himself) writes for The Container. He has been a national affairs reporter and editor for nearly two decades, having covered elections, Supreme Court nominations, fiscal policy and the health care debate.