How can approval processes be better designed in the future to enable the commercial use of Uncrewed Aerial Systems (UAS) in the “specific category” and prevent an overload of the drone industry? This question was discussed today at the European Drone Forum (EDF) organized by UAV DACH in Cologne, Germany, between representatives of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the drone industry. It was agreed to establish a more structured dialogue in the future to jointly evaluate problem areas for UAS-based business models.
EASA strongly recommends small and medium drone companies to engage in associations to coordinate their approach and develop proposals. The Joint European Drone Associations (JEDA) proposed to act as a pan-European umbrella organization to gather the needs of UAS operators and manufacturers and act as an interface with EASA.
In order to be able to discuss and decide on a fact-based basis, operational data from the UAS industry will in future be collected and collated by JEDA and made available to EASA in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the guidelines for drone use set out by the European drone directives. In addition, lessons learned about any difficulties or technical incidents that occur will be shared. In the interest of maximizing the safety of air traffic, a culture of probity, or Just Culture, is to be cultivated in order to develop solutions and processes without reservations and in the spirit of the drone economy. The common goal of all participants is to accelerate approval processes and facilitate application procedures by gaining know-how and expertise – both on the part of the authorities and on the part of the operators.
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