Lorie Masters, a Partner at Perkins Coie, looks at the risks associated with operating Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and drones, for operations and provides advice on ways to manage them.
While still at the dawn in the use of UAVs, Ms. Coie sees several risks emerging from their use, including first-party risks associated with the cost of the drone, and the cost of the payload, including a camera, imagining equipment or software. The third-party liability exposures include bodily injury or property damage. Ms. Coie suggests drone operators also consider the possible exposure to invasion of privacy and cyber risks. Some of the more esoteric exposures could involve intellectual property explores.
While Ms. Coie says, even though best practices in the use of drones continue to develop, risk managers should follow “safe practices.” Are operators trained; do they understand the technology? Are they following available safety guideline, from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for example? The FAA has expressed concern over interference with commercial aircraft. If operators are flying drones within five miles of an airport, they are required to file with air traffic controller.
Ms. Coie suggests join an association that supports the safe use of drones and taking any available safety training courses. She recommends looking into the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) for useful information about drone safety, training and conference that address drone usage.
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