City Council pushes to use drones for facade inspections in NYC

City Council push to use drones for facade inspections in NYC

New York City Council is pushing to use drones for facade inspections in New York City following a horrific accident last year, when a piece of facade came loose from a building and killed a pedestrian.

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It’s time for New York to craft common-sense regulations for drones

Justin Brannan, who represents Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, and Bath Beach in the City Council, argues in the New York Daily News that “it’s time for New York to craft common-sense regulations for drones.” I couldn’t agree with him more. However, Brannan also mentions new legislation that he has drafted to allow drones to be flown in the city. He mentions registration and insurance requirements as well as a form of Remote ID. It is unclear whether his drafted legislation is in line with what the FAA is doing, or whether Brannan is proposing legislation purely for drone flying in New York City. I would argue against the latter, as it will contribute to an impossibly hard-to-navigate patchwork of drone laws around the country, similar to what Mike Lee is suggesting with the Drone Integration and Zoning Act.

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Drone ‘technology’s hand is being tied behind its back’ by outdated NYC law

Last year we reported on how an outdated law prohibits drone flying in New York City. Today, the Wall Street Journal writes about how drone “technology’s hand is being tied behind its back” by this decade-old law. While other cities such as Los Angeles and Chicago are embracing drone technology, New York City is falling further behind. For instance, the use of drones could save tremendous amounts of time during the five-year inspections of building facades that are currently done manually. Not having to set up scaffolding around New York high-rises also eliminates the risks involved when people have to ascend these structures to perform the mandatory inspections. Drones from companies such as Automodaility and PrecisionHawk could do that work faster, safer, and more cheaply. The article also points out the safety concerns that industry insiders have for New York’s residents and the general public. See below for some quotes and highlights from this Wall Street Journal article [paywall].

Fly your drone in NYC? Best to watch this video first!

You’d like to fly your drone in NYC? Well, it is probably best to watch this video first. Griffin Hammond does a great job explaining why it’s mostly illegal to fly your drone in NYC. He lists four main reasons as to why he, even as an FAA-certified pilot, can’t fly drones in New York City. There’s a fifth reason, not mentioned in the video, that should also warn you against flying your unmanned aircraft in the big apple. Luckily there are a few places where you can still legally fly and you will not be hunted down by the NYPD.

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Outdated NYC law prohibits drone flying in the city

Last week, Tech:NYC together with DJI, organized their third edition of Policy Labs ‘Drones 101’ at DJI’s offices in New York. The event brings together industry leaders and policymakers to discuss the implications of emerging technology. This time the focus was on drones and the outdated NYC law that restrict drone use in both the city of New York and the state.

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Casey Neistat celebrates the 4th of July by drone surfing on New York City’s East River [video]

To celebrate the 4th of July, Casey Neistat just released this video on YouTube of him drone surfing on New York City’s East River. A lot of the footage in the short film is really quite stunning as the city provides an awesome backdrop for all his stunts, not just in this video. Regardless of what you think of his FAA rules-breaking drone flying, you have to admit that Casey has a nick for attention-grabbing videos. Check out his latest video and the behind the scenes video below and let us know what you think. Is he celebrating the 4 of July or his seemingly independence of the drone rules that do apply to the rest of us?

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