Drones Cleared for Domestic Use Across the United States
November 29th, 2011
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What do you know about drones? You know drones â€” those robotic, unmanned planes that fire missiles for the American military across Afghanistan, Pakistan and anywhere else the United States needs to get away with murder.
Well if you donâ€™t know too much, donâ€™t worry, thatâ€™ll change soon. The Federal Aviation Administration is looking into rules that will bring the controversial aircraft into the country, creating an United States airspace buzzing with tiny, robot planes to look over every inch of American soil â€” and maybe more.
An article published Tuesday in the Los Angeles Times reveals that new drone planes could be coming domestically quite soon, as both law enforcement and the agricultural sector are seeing benefits in keeping an arsenal of unmanned planes ready to patrol the skies. For farmers, drones could bring a new method of pumping pesticides into fields of crops from above; for the cops, the aircraft could conduct surveillance over suspected criminals (think police chopper but remote controlled). The Times reports that utility companies see a benefit in drones as well, giving them a new set of eyes to monitor oil, gas and water pipelines.
But with missile-equipped drones causing thousands of deaths overseas, the installation of a drone program stateside could be detrimental to America as the government all but deems the country fit as a warfront.
“It’s going to happen,”Â Dan Elwell, vice president of civil aviation at the Aerospace Industries Association, tells the Times.Â “Now it’s about figuring out how to safely assimilate the technology into national airspace.”
According to the Department of Homeland Securityâ€™s website, the government has already been using drones domestically for several years, but remains mostly mum on their missions, other than that they are regularly used for“support of disaster relief efforts.”
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