FAA issues waiver to fly drone with parachute

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that it has issued Hensel Phelps Construction Company of Washington, D.C., a part 107 waiver on June 1 to operate a DJI Phantom 4 drone, equipped with a parachute, over people.

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A waiver is required to operate a drone contrary to the rules in part 107, which is the small unmanned aircraft rule.

The FAA did not certify or approve the parachute that will be used; however, the FAA determined that the waiver application sufficiently met the standard design specification (ASTM 3322-18) and that the proposed small unmanned aircraft system (sUAS) operation could be safely conducted under the terms and conditions of a waiver.

This waiver represents the first time the FAA has collaborated with industry in developing a publicly available standard, worked with an applicant to ensure the testing and data collected acceptably met the standard, and issued a waiver using an industry standard as a basis to determine that a proposed sUAS operation can be safely conducted under the terms and conditions of a waiver under part 107.

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This process is scalable and available to other applicants who propose to use the same drone and parachute combination. The FAA will require each applicant to provide the testing, documentation, and statement of compliance listed in ASTM3322-18 in their applications using the same drone and parachute combination.

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