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View Diary: FEMA arrives in Colorado to help, quickly grounds drones mapping damage (41 comments)

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  •  bad press for drones (0+ / 0-)

    Part of the whole justification for working on drone technology was use during natural disasters -- I've seen a lot of gov't contracting material go past that basically says "the funding of this is coming because we are going to use them to spy/bomb people, but we PROMISE CROSS OUR HEARTS we can use them for wildfires,too".  

    And now that they have an opportunity, they're not using them.  I would believe the rescue copter story about why they're grounded, though -- people don't yet understand what drones are, really, and why they wouldn't be any more dangerous to have in the air than random private planes.

    •  If it was about rescue copters (0+ / 0-)

      Then all other aircraft would be grounded. That is not the case.

      •  "Other aircraft" weren't grounded (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        IndieGuy, poco, BachFan, antimony, craiger

        because the FAA can already integrate them within the Air Traffic Management system. The FAA has only recently begun their five-year plan to address how precisely to integrate UAVs, with a particular and quite reasonable concern for collision-avoidance.

        Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time. (Terry Pratchett)

        by angry marmot on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 07:49:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

          •  Honestly, I've no idea what (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            poco, IndieGuy, antimony, craiger

            that response means.

            The FAA does not currently have a standard to permit UAVs to interoperate with manned aircraft. That standard is expected sometime in 2016. Technologies for collision-avoidance are a fundamental issue, as recent FAA reports and the GAO study demonstrate quite clearly.

            Really, you're making this much more difficult than it need be. Quelle surprise...

            Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time. (Terry Pratchett)

            by angry marmot on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 09:07:45 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Drones the Size of the Falcon Depicted ... (6+ / 0-)

              are virtually invisible, both to the eye and to Air Traffic Control (unless they have some sort of transponder, which I doubt.) This creates a considerable hazard for manned aircraft, and is one of many reasons that drones are not given unrestricted access to the airspace. In addition, the drone operators likely do not have much in the way of a "see and avoid" capability on their end.

              "A famous person once said, 'You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.' But as I once said, "If you don't teach them to read, you can fool them whenever you like." – Max Headroom

              by midnight lurker on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 10:15:03 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  yeah (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              angry marmot, craiger

              Yeah.  Complain that the FAA is way behind on this, sure.  Complain that things were poorly handled in this instances such that there was ambiguity in the minds of laypeople, also sure.  UAVs save money and lives in these sort of situations, but only if integrated properly into a command-and-control (or whatever acronym they're using these days -- I've been out of the aerodef loop for a while) structure.  

              Basically, saying they should have had them in the air is like saying drug companies should be able to give away experimental drugs that haven't been proven to be safe to the FDA's satisfaction.  Even if they might include a promising possible cure for [insert horrible disease], there are rules.  

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