In response to President Barack Obama's comments calling for more regulation of unmanned aircraft following the White House incident, the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) is saying more regulation would not have prevented the crash.
“Community-based programming is the key to safe and responsible flying,” says Bob Brown, president of AMA, “as our organization’s 78-year history has shown.”
He adds that the organization has “safety guidelines, best practices and operating principles that have allowed enthusiasts to operate their aircraft and safely use this [unmanned] technology for more than seven decades.”
“While the White House ‘drone’ incident is sparking calls for more regulations, the fact is, more regulation isn’t the answer,” he explains. “The Washington, D.C., airspace is some of the most heavily regulated airspace in the world, and all aircraft operations are currently prohibited in the vicinity of the White House. Despite the existing regulations, a quadcopter still made its way onto the White House lawn this week.”
Brown says, “AMA has always believed that the best, and perhaps the only, way to successfully manage the recreational community is through a community-based set of safety guidelines and the combined efforts of the [Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)] and AMA.
“The FAA’s recent interpretation of the Special Rule for Model Aircraft has complicated our working relationship, but it is our hope that the agency will work with us to forge a path forward for the recreational community that finds common ground on the Interpretive Rule and leverages AMA’s deep expertise when it comes to safe and responsible flying.”
AMA recently sent a letter to the FAA to offer “expertise and knowledge in support of the FAA’s effort to create guidance for the operation of recreational sUAS in the [National Airspace System]’ – which can be found here.
AMA is one of the partners of the Know Before You Fly safety campaign for UAS.