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12.22.2014

AUVSI, AMA, Small UAV Coalition and FAA Launch “Know Before You Fly” Campaign

Leading UAS organizations seek to promote safe and responsible flying in partnership with the FAA 

WASHINGTON – Leading unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) industry and hobbyist groups, along with the federal government, today launched a new education campaign titled, “Know Before You Fly,” which provides prospective operators with the information and guidance they need to fly safely and responsibly. The effort is being spearheaded by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) and the Small UAV Coalition in partnership with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

The ease of acquiring UAS technology has led to a proliferation of unmanned flights, some of which are authorized and some of which are not. When it comes to unauthorized flights, many well-meaning individuals and prospective business operators want to fly and fly safely, but they don’t realize that, just because you can buy a UAS, doesn’t mean you can fly it anywhere, or for any purpose.

“There is a lot of excitement and enthusiasm around UAS, and the technology is becoming the must-have holiday gift,” said Michael Toscano, President and CEO of AUVSI. “The ‘Know Before You Fly’ campaign fills a critical education gap just in time for the holiday season. We want to ensure that all prospective operators have the tools they need to fly safely and responsibly.”

“AMA’s members have been flying model aircraft safely for nearly 80 years, and we want to take this opportunity to share our expertise with people who are new to the technology,” said Bob Brown, President of AMA. “Our 175,000 members are intimately familiar with our safety code, which we take very seriously, but not everyone who buys an unmanned aircraft knows what he or she should and should not do. Flying model aircraft is a fun and educational experience. We want to ensure it’s done as safely as possible.”

“The current policies for the use of UAS are incredibly complex, and often people who purchase these platforms in stores or online are unaware that safety guidelines exist,” said Michael Drobac of the Small UAV Coalition. “Our hope is that the campaign will make this information more accessible to the legions of flyers increasingly taking to the skies. We want to help reduce the incidence of unsafe and/or unauthorized operations and ensure the safety of the skies for all aircraft, both manned and unmanned.”

The campaign plans to team up with manufacturers and distributors to inform consumers and businesses about what they need to know before taking to the skies. The campaign includes a website, educational video, point-of-sale materials and a digital and social media campaign to ensure that prospective operators have the information and guidance on what they need to know before they fly a UAS.

"We are proud to be partnering with AUVSI, AMA and the Small UAV Coalition in spreading the word about ways to fly safely and responsibly," said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. "We often say that safety is a shared responsibility. The ‘Know Before You Fly’ campaign allows us to harness the resources and expertise of industry as we strive to provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world.”

For more information, visit www.knowbeforeyoufly.org or follow the trend online with # #KnowB4UFly.

 

Contacts:

Daniel Lebiednik, media@knowbeforeyoufly.org or (202) 777-3527

 

Les Dorr, les.dorr@faa.gov or (202) 267-3883

 

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About AUVSI

The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI)—the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of unmanned systems and robotics—represents more than 7,500 members from 60+ allied countries involved in the fields of government, industry and academia. AUVSI members work in the defense, civil and commercial markets. For more information, go to www.auvsi.org.

 

About AMA

The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) is the premier community-based organization in the United States for model aviation enthusiasts. With 175,000 members, the AMA is dedicated to the advancement and safeguarding of modeling activities. The Academy provides leadership, organization, competition, protection, representation, education and scientific/technical development to the model aviation community. For more information, go to www.modelaircraft.org.

 

About Small UAV Coalition

The Small UAV Coalition advocates for law and policy changes to permit the operation of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) beyond the line-of-sight, with varying degrees of autonomy, for commercial, civil and philanthropic purposes. Its members include the leading manufacturers, operators, and service providers of small UAVs. For more information, go to www.smalluavcoalition.org.

 

About the FAA

The Federal Aviation Administration is committed to providing the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world. The agency is executing a plan for safe and staged integration of unmanned aircraft systems into the National Airspace System. For more information, go to www.faa.gov/UAS.