August 9, 2019

By K. Daniel Glover

Drone pilots across the country are getting their requests to fly in controlled airspace reviewed more quickly thanks to a new approach implemented in FAA service centers last fall.

The agency relocated the tasking to review airspace authorizations to subject matter experts in the service centers in Georgia, Texas and Washington. These teams processed a backlog of nearly 20,000 requests in the ensuing months. Now they are focused on the hundreds of new requests submitted through the FAADroneZone each week.

“It has become a model for the world,” said Anthony Schneider, the Air Traffic Organization’s safety director. “It’s really an amazing story.”