Through a Section 333 exemption to Cox Media Group stations, FOX23 of Tulsa, Okla., says it has become the first station in the city to launch a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)-approved drone for newsgathering.
FOX23 says it has already used the DJI Phantom 3 Professional to get overhead footage of local flooding. James Aydelott, a licensed pilot and the station’s chief meteorologist, is flying the aircraft. According to the FAA commercial exemption grant, the Cox Media Group stations can also operate the DJI Phantom 3 Advanced, Phantom 2 and Inspire 1.
FOX23 says its sister stations in Atlanta; Boston; Jacksonville, Fla.; Memphis, Tenn.; and Orlando, Fla., have also begun using drones for newsgathering.
“We’re giving our viewers a perspective of the day’s major events like they’ve never had before,” says Greg Bilte, vice president and general manager of KOKI-TV and KMYT-TV, in a news post from FOX23. “Every day we promise to cover news that matters; this new technology will help us do that for our viewers.”
Photo courtesy of FOX23