Disaster Zone

Be Prepared to Issue Ban on Drones

Boil water and ground drones.

by Eric Holdeman / October 3, 2018

It is not unusual that in the immediate aftermath of a disaster there could be public health orders issued. If the water system has been compromised, there could be a "Boil water before use" order issued. I'd like to recommend that you automatically issue a new order just prior to a disaster (if you have a warning) or immediately following a disaster impact. This would order the grounding of all amateur drones — to keep them from flying.

We know about the threat from drones interfering in wildfire operations, but we are going to need professional drone operators working to support disaster response and recovery and also the normal helicopter and other aviation support needed following a disaster. 

See this article, More than 53 teams recruited to help with damage assessment, which speaks to how there was planned use for drones following Hurricane Florence. 

There will be infrastructure owners and operators working to identify damages and also help in the repair. Insurance companies have totally accepted the advantages of drones to do damage assessments for properties that they insure. 

As governments, we need to "clear the air" of amateur drones so that the "business" of disaster response and recovery can proceed.

I will do some research on who has the authority to ground drone aircraft. Is it only the FAA, or can a local jurisdiction act?

Claire Rubin shared the linked article above.