BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WEEK) — The federal government granted State Farm its first national waiver to conduct drone flights over people and out of the pilot’s visual sight.
The Federal Aviation Administration granted State Farm the waivers for damage assessment purposes.
“It’s been a team effort to make drone technology a reality,” says Senior Vice President for P&C Claims Robert Yi. “The waiver will provide our claims specialists with another way to efficiently help customers. We can use drones to assess on-the-ground damage and deploy resources. This is a huge win for our customers and demonstrates we’re recognized as a leader in drone technology.”
Current FAA regulations forbid drone pilots to fly beyond their visual line of sight or over groups of people. However, in catastrophe situations, access can be blocked by water, debris, or damage to infrastructure, State Farm said.
State Farm said the waiver will also open up innovation opportunities for longer drone flights. The waiver lasts through November 2022.