It seems that the argument is between those who want to require a commercial pilots license and those who believe a private pilots license is sufficient for flying quadcopters.

"Enabling private pilots to work commercially would set a precedent, the inspectors wrote, boxing in the FAA while it developed a permanent set of drone regulations. They also noted that private pilots are twice as likely to be involved in fatal accidents as commercial pilots."

Story here.

Reported instances of headshaking, sighs, looks of general annoyance on the uptick.

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  • Rob, while you are correct there is money at stake, commercial operations have a lower accident rate because they are more heavily regulated, the aircraft themselves require a different maintenance inspections/overhaul intervals than private operations (even if the make and model aircraft is the same),commercial pilots have more required training, commercial pilots have more annual training requirements, both the knowledge and certification tests have stricter standards, and most commercial pilots won't do dumb or risky stuff because money is at stake.  Not the money they earn from that job or flight, but potentially the end of all further earnings based on their certificates they spent 10's of thousands of dollars to obtain, and most time many years of training.

  • They also noted that private pilots are twice as likely to be involved in fatal accidents as commercial pilots.

    What?  But I thought that soon as something became commercial, the chance of accidents went up because people take chances when money is at stake?!  <more eye rolling>

  • The AMA already has rules and regulations on unmanned aircraft. Why don't they build on that. Not to mention when you join the AMA you have insurance. Why aren't the two working together?

  • Commercial (which I have) vs Private pilot.... different medical examine and a little longer test.

    That's it, doesn't make you a better drone pilot in any way :( 

  • That is also very simple "Liability" in any commercial action the pilot has to be identifiable and held accountable.

    The other obvious fact is a manned aircraft such as an Ultralight the pilot has his very own life in the balance that is not nearly the same thing as a drone.

    Commercial flight should always have a license and proof of ability and responsibility.

    I'm not saying you necessarily need a PVT ticket to fly UAS and I'm not saying your not right about part 91. But there will be a minimum amount of training to fly commercial I imagine and I also think a minimum amount of certification for the aircraft for commercial purposes.

    This is only logical and correct.     

  • RocketMan, I understand your point regarding commercial, you are right part 103 is private only. However if the FAA is concerned about safety, how is commercial any more dangerous than private(another topic completely), or someone buying a ultralight and just going flying? My point is this why should someone be allowed to fly a ultralight with no training, and drones whether commercial or private not be allowed to fly? Bottom line if persons can fly under part 103, then drones should be under their own part, and not part 91! using the same rules similar to part 103, and then distinguish with in that part between private and commercial operations, none of which should require any actual "flight" training as in part 103. If some should be able to fly a ultralight in the NAS then I should be able to fly a drone, multirotor, fixed wing sUAS in the NAS as well, whether it be commercial or private.

  • Joe

     Because they are simply this "Non Commercial" I don't think the FAA is going to require all model drones to have a PVT ticket as they shouldn't.

     That is why you can't compare Ultralights to Commercial Drones. You can compare Ultralights to all the non commercial stuff you like. And I expect the FAA will allow very similar rules to those for Ultralights for non commercial drones within LOS.

     That is the reason the sky is not full of Ultralight Aircraft if they could be used for commercial purposes it likely would be.


  • Brendan,  I hope you guys provide this information to the members of the House Senate Panel on UAS that met last week.  It addresses a number of the questions and concerns of the panel members, that the individuals that were present, were unable to address.

  • You know honestly, the people that are commenting on this site and others, aren't the ones that need the FAA and the public, needs to be concerned with. Most are trying to help assist in the process of allowing us to fly our aircraft. We know the issues, and what not to do. There could be all the regulation in the world, however it isn't going to stop the people that insist on being ignorant causing issues with this technology.

  • What I am saying is why are people allowed to fly in the NAS if they have enough money to by a ultralight, and with little or no training go flying under part 103, and drones that meet most of all of the same requirements are not. I am using part 103 as a example that we should be able to fly in the NAS without a private or commercial license. Besides that fact that by definition a using a private license in-itself flys (pun intended) in the face of the definition of the license.

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