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AUVSI Statement on Phoenix Air Unmanned BVLOS Exemption

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ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA, USA, August 24, 2023/ -- The Association for Uncrewed Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) today applauded the Federal Aviation Administration’s grant of an exemption to Phoenix Air Unmanned to conduct commercial drone operations beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS).

Chief Advocacy Officer Michael Robbins said: “AUVSI is encouraged by this approval, which demonstrates the significant progress the drone industry is making toward scalable commercial drone operations beyond visual line of sight in data and inspection services. We urge the FAA to approve additional exemption requests that will unlock other valuable uses of drones and increase access to more communities -- including cargo, consumer and health care delivery -- and pave the way towards a Part 108 rule.”

In June, AUVSI submitted comments to the Federal Register in support for BVLOS exemptions for Phoenix Air Unmanned, uAvionix, UPS Flight Forward, and Zipline, as well as comments in response to the FAA's UAS BVLOS Request for Comment. AUVSI President and CEO Brian Wynne served on the FAA’s BVLOS Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC), which submitted its report to the FAA in March 2022.

Robbins added: “AUVSI supports FAA's initiatives to continue progress on BVLOS operations in advance of the finalization of a rule on the topic. By providing industry with frameworks for operations, the FAA is increasing certainty to this growing industry and creating accelerated pathways for low-altitude operations. Still, we urge the FAA to proceed with promulgating a final BVLOS rule that provides a regulatory pathway for these operations with urgency.”

Chelsie Jeppson
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