Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

News & Analysis as of

U.S. Senate Passes Bipartisan FAA Bill Marking First Step to UAS Regulations

On April 19, the United States Senate passed bipartisan legislation that would reauthorize federal funding for the Federal Aviation Administration for the next two fiscal years. The Senate-passed bill, which will not take...more

Flying into Darkness – Commercial Drone Night Flights Approved by the FAA

Last week, the FAA issued an historic authority to Industrial Skyworks for nighttime commercial UAS operations. The Section 333 exemption, obtained with the help of Kenneth Quinn, Jennifer Trock, and Graham Keithley of...more

Innovator Drug/510k Medical Device Impossibility Preemption and the Meaning of “A Fortiori”

According to Black’s Law Dictionary, “a fortiori” is legal Latin meaning: - By even greater force of logic; even more so it follows. We’ve been arguing for some time – since PLIVA v. Mensing, 131 S. Ct. 2567...more

Proposed U.S. Legislation Would Impose Additional Consumer Protection Obligations on Foreign Airlines

On April 20, 2016, the U.S. Senate passed the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act of 2016 that would authorize funding for programs under the FAA through September 2017. Most of the extensive legislation...more

New Regulations on the Horizon for Commercial Drones

Currently, the use of drones or unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for commercial purposes in general is not permitted in the United States, although there is one exception. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) allows...more

Expanding Horizons: Drone Regulations from a Prosecutorial Perspective

BB&K attorney Jordan Ferguson writes about the criminal side of drones for the California District Attorneys Association’s Prosecutor’s Brief. Over the next few years, the skies are likely to get much more crowded....more

FAA committee report recommends operation of small drones over crowds

The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Micro Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) released its “ARC Recommendations Final Report” this month after meeting in March to discuss...more

The Rise, and Risk, of Construction Drones

Drone usage on construction projects is ready to take off. With recent enhancements in performance and capability, it will soon be hard to imagine a large construction project without drones playing some role. Consider this...more

FAA Clarifies Federal, State, and Local Regulation of UAS

The FAA has released a fact sheet regarding state and local regulation of unmanned aircraft systems (“UAS”). The FAA advises that state and local restrictions should be consistent with the extensive federal statutory and...more

The Sky is the Limit

Miami’s ever-changing skyline is set for its biggest upgrade yet. With the Federal Aviation Administration’s recent decision to allow buildings in Miami to reach a height of 1,049 feet above sea level, One Brickell City...more

PHMSA Signals Intent to Adopt ICAO Ban on Bulk Shipments of Lithium Ion Batteries as Cargo on U.S. Passenger Aircraft

Summary: The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued a safety advisory notice indicating that the agency may soon adopt a ban on bulk shipments of lithium ion batteries shipped alone as cargo on...more

FAA Expands Online Registration System for UAS Owners

Commercial, public and other non-model aircraft owners of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) owners may now use the FAA’s new web-based registration process to register their aircrafts....more

In Case You Missed It: Launch Links - April 2016

Some interesting links we found across the web this week: - Startup Funding Deals Fall to Lowest Level in Four Years - The Q1 numbers came in this week and they’re not pretty, showing the fewest total venture...more

Short-Term Reauthorization of FAA Programs Potentially Paves the Way For Omitted Energy Credit Extenders

As discussed in our post on March 16, the Congressional extension of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 45 and the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) under IRC Section 48 in December 2015...more

Get your student pilot certificate and commercial drone operator certificate sooner rather than later

As of April 1 individuals seeking their student pilot certificate must wait until the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) background checks are completed before receiving the certification, whereas prior to the...more

FAA Drone Panel's Report a Major Step Toward Newsgathering Over People

Yesterday, April 6, a panel of industry experts assembled by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) submitted its report recommending a new regulatory framework for the flight of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones,...more

FAA Advisory Group Recommends Framework for Drone Flights Over People

Today, April 6, a panel of industry experts assembled by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) submitted its report recommending a new regulatory framework for the flight of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones,...more

Health Care Congressional Outlook for the Spring Word Period

The next work period basically runs from April 4 to May 27, with both chambers adjourning for a week long recess the week of May 2. Following this work period, there will be five weeks left on the legislative calendar before...more

FAA makes it easier to fly UAS between 200' and 400', but also imposes extensive new reporting requirements for accidents,...

On March 29, 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) made a major change in policy that further opens the skies to operators of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), but also imposes new administrative reporting burdens....more

Washington, D.C. Update – March 2016

With only a handful of items currently active on the House and Senate agendas, FY17 appropriations legislation is the major legislative game in town. The House and Senate Appropriations Committees are moving forward with...more

FAA increases altitude for commercial drones

On March 29, 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that its “blanket” altitude authorization for Section 333 exemption for commercial drone operators will increase from 200 feet to 400 feet. After an...more

McElroy Films secures FAA Section 333 exemption

Boston video production company, McElroy Films, LLC (McElroy Films), recently secured its Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Section 33 exemption, adding its name (and services) to the list of 22 other commercial drone...more

FAA 2016 to 2036 Aerospace Forecast released

Last week, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released the “2016 to 2036 Aerospace Forecast” stating “there is optimism that the industry has been transformed from that of a boom-to-bust cycle to one of sustainable...more

Commercial use of drones: what is allowed? What is not? FAA, Congress and the states are weighing in

The varying commercial applications of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) – more commonly referred to as drones – across multiple industries poses a number of opportunities and challenges for companies both big and small....more

FAA Raises “Blanket” Altitude Authorization to 400 Feet

Commercial operators of small unmanned aircraft systems (“UAS”) that are authorized to operate in the U.S. under a Section 333 exemption from the FAA may now operate up to 400 feet without obtaining a Certificate of Waiver or...more

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