FAA Nearly Disrupt Disney's Holiday Light Display


Late at night, the skies over Disney World are taken by stunning lights and fireworks. But, to create more excitement and entertainment, Disney World decided to use LED lights through a new drone technology.

Flixels, one of Disney's newest innovations, allows a computer to fly and coordinate several unmanned aircrafts equipped with LED lights at the same time, in order to imitate fireworks and other special effects. This will help Disney to reduce cost and increase safety, while entertaining thousands of eyes.

But, something that Disney didn't take into consideration was federal regulations.

Part 107 of the FAA regulations indicates that an individual (in this case, a computer) may not operate more than one drone at a time.

The regulations also states that “anyone who is not directly participating in the operation, not under a covered structure, or not inside a covered stationary vehicle” can not fly a UAS.

Even though the FAA prohibits many uses of drones in public spaces and others, Disney was able to received a waiver that exempted them from the regulations previously mentioned.

Only Disney is allowed to fly several drones at a time. This situation created a controversy with many small companies that also need this kind of "special treatment."

The Part 107 was implemented on August 2016, and affects everyone that wants to get into the drone business. But, with a specific and detailed case presented in front of the authorities, companies are allowed to request waiver of any regulations, as long as the case is valid and justifiable.

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