One of the nation’s top UAV training organizations will soon be in the driver’s seat when it comes to providing safety information to NASCAR.
“UAS are a growing concern for NASCAR and other sports leagues and organizations as 2014 saw an increase in incidents involving civilians flying the devices over outdoor venues, posing a safety and security risk to persons on the ground,” a USI spokesperson said.
NASCAR recently announced implementation of a “counter-UAS policy” which will require all speedways which conduct any NASCAR-sanctioned events to “identify and ground” any flights over those sites. The USI says the summit speech will seek to “educate [NASCAR] on UAS capabilities and counter measures.”
In October, the FAA announced that “operators who fly drones or model planes near or over large sports stadiums and auto racetracks are breaking the law and can be fined and imprisoned for up to a year.”
The notice encompasses “games for “Major League Baseball, National Football League, or NCAA Division One football … [as well as] NASCAR Spring Cup, Indy Car, and champ series races, excluding qualifying and pre-race events.” The FAA also warned pilots that the federal agency “may be intercepted, detained and interviewed by law enforcement/security personnel … “subject to certain criminal penalties.”
New York attorney Brendan Schulman, who represents several drone operators, told the Associated Press that the notice was “another attempt by the FAA to impose legal restriction on drones or model aircraft that never existed before.” Schulman added that such actions “do little or nothing” to prevent terrorist attacks since the “three-mile perimeter can be traversed by a plane in minutes or seconds.”
The Unmanned Safety Institute is a professional organization focused on UAS flight safety through the adoption and modification of aviation safety and training practices. “The Institute achieves its mission by focusing on three key tenets: human factors, technology reliability, and building safe organizations. USI training programs are offered to UAS operators of all levels.”
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