NPR Story
3:10 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Drone Expert: Drone Delivery Still 10 Years Away

The Federal Aviation Administration says it is seeing an uptick nationally in close calls between planes and drones. Hobbyists must fly their drones below 400 feet and within line of sight.

Meanwhile, the FAA is reviewing commercial use of drones and testing commercial drones at six sites across the country.

A New York congressman recently got into trouble for using a drone to take photographs over his wedding. And a drone carrying cellphones, marijuana and tobacco was recently found outside the fence of a prison in South Carolina.

Former Navy fighter pilot Missy Cummings teaches about drones at MIT and Duke University. She tells Here & Now’s Robin Young that right now there are technical obstacles to using drones for everyday deliveries, as Amazon has proposed. She believes that drone delivery is about 10 years away from reality.

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