13 Industries That Would Be Impacted by New Federal Drone Detection Recommendations

The new recommendations outlined in the UAS Detection and Mitigation Systems Final Report have significant advantages and disadvantages for various industries.
Published: March 8, 2024

As the increase in drone activity rises, so do the unintended consequences and nefarious uses.

The proposed recommendations outlined in the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Detection and Mitigation Systems Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) Final Report, released on Jan. 9 by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in conjunction with over 50 members from all facets of industries, have significant advantages and disadvantages for various industries. These industries include construction, industrial, sporting stadiums, law enforcement, campus security, medical facilities, state prison facilities, energy infrastructure, airports, home security systems, corporate espionage, realtors, air shows, festivals, races, cruise/travel industry, and many more.

Law enforcement agencies and campus security departments are increasingly relying on drones for surveillance and situational awareness. However, the misuse of drones can compromise public safety and violate privacy rights. The recommendations from the proposal can assist law enforcement and campus security personnel in identifying and neutralizing unauthorized drones, ensuring the responsible and lawful use of this technology.

Medical facilities, such as hospitals and clinics and those that have helicopter pads, need to maintain a secure environment to protect patient privacy and ensure the smooth operation of healthcare services. Drone interference can disrupt the need for expedient transport of patients from airborne medical transport, sensitive medical equipment, or compromise patient confidentiality. By implementing the proposed detection, medical facilities can safeguard their operations and provide uninterrupted care to patients.

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Sporting stadiums, known for hosting large gatherings of people, need to prioritize security. Drones flying over stadiums, violating temporary flight restrictions (TFRs), can not only disrupt the event but also pose a safety risk to spectators. The implementation of detection and systems can aid in identifying unauthorized drones and taking appropriate action to protect the safety and enjoyment of attendees.

State prison facilities face unique challenges when it comes to drone interference. Unauthorized drones can be used to deliver contraband or aid in escape attempts. Since geofencing only outlines immediate boundaries of specific buildings, detection systems are a must to help prison authorities detect and neutralize drones, thereby enhancing the security of these facilities.

In the construction industry, the use of drones has become increasingly popular for surveying, monitoring construction sites, and capturing aerial footage for marketing purposes. However, without proper detection, unauthorized drones can pose a threat to worker safety, project security, and the integrity of the construction site. Some construction companies have outright banned any use of drones by company personnel and contract with third-party companies. Implementing the recommendations from this proposal can help ensure the safe and secure operation of drones in construction zones.

Similarly, industrial facilities face risks from unauthorized drone activity. These facilities often contain sensitive equipment, hazardous materials, or critical infrastructure that could be targeted by malicious drone operators. By adopting the proposed detection and possible mitigation systems if approved by the FCC, industrial facilities can enhance their security measures and mitigate potential risks and threats.

Energy infrastructure, including power plants and oil refineries, is critical to the functioning of modern society which is why they are classified as ‘critical infrastructure.’ Drones can pose a significant risk to such facilities, either through intentional attacks or accidental interference. The adoption of detection and FCC-approved mitigation systems can bolster the security measures already in place and protect these vital assets from potential threats.

Airports, being hubs of transportation, are vulnerable to drone activity. Unauthorized drones near airports can disrupt air traffic, endangering the safety of passengers and crew. By implementing the recommendations from the proposal, airports can enhance their existing security protocols and ensure the safe operation of flights.

Home security systems, designed to protect residences and personal property, can be enhanced with drone detection systems. These systems can help homeowners identify and respond to unauthorized drones, ensuring the safety and privacy of their homes.

Corporate espionage is a growing concern for businesses across various industries. Drones equipped with cameras and advanced surveillance capabilities can be used to gather sensitive information or conduct unauthorized reconnaissance. The adoption of detection systems can help organizations protect their intellectual property and maintain their competitive advantage.

Realtors, who often rely on aerial photography and videography for property listings, can benefit from the implementation of drone detection systems. Unauthorized drones flying near properties can compromise the privacy of homeowners and potential buyers. By adopting the proposed systems, realtors can ensure a secure and uninterrupted environment for property viewings.

Air shows, festivals, and races are popular events that attract large crowds. The presence of unauthorized drones can not only disrupt these events but also pose a safety risk to participants and spectators. Implementing the recommendations from the proposal can help event organizers maintain controlled airspace and ensure the safety of everyone involved.

The cruise and travel industry, which relies on the smooth operation of ports and terminals, can face disruptions from unauthorized drone activity. Drones flying near cruise ships or passenger terminals can create safety hazards and logistical challenges. By implementing the proposed detection systems, the cruise and travel industry can enhance their security measures and provide a safe and enjoyable experience for passengers.

In conclusion, the recommendations from the UAS Detection and FCC Mitigation Systems ARC Final Report have far-reaching advantages and disadvantages for various industries. By adopting the proposed detection and FCC-approved mitigation systems, these industries can enhance their security measures, protect their assets, and ensure the safety and privacy of their operations and stakeholders.

Greg MacMaster is a former Michigan State Representative and was part of the formation of the UAS Task Force. At the height of when drones were starting to become a frequent occurrence over prisons, he was the Chairman of the Michigan Department of Corrections from 2013-2014. MacMaster is also the president of Eagle Eye Media, Drone Sky Defender.

Note: The views expressed by guest bloggers and contributors are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, Campus Safety.

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