Approval of drones for commercial uses without strict regulatory oversight, thoughtful monitoring, and prudent screening will create nightmares for privacy, noise, safety and national security. Among the obvious concerns:
Who is allowed to have one?
Law enforcement seems a reasonable circle. But what if criminals get them? Imagine air support for a bank robbery. What about domestic terrorists? What about assassination threats?
How about mid air collisions? Should they be allowed in school zones? Residential neighborhoods? Would there be size or weight limits for personal use? If one of these things comes down on a baby carriage it will be a nightmare.
What is the fault rate? Do these fail in mid air? Who will be allowed to manufacture them? Do we want to own Chinese made drones? Do we want the Chinese making drones? Do we want the rest of the world to have them?
When these become commercially available in the US a black market will arrive to export them to failed states to be used against the weak and the poor and more than likely on us.
How much modification is required to weaponize a commercial drone? Is this difficult?
The list goes on, but I favor the comment in the last sentence. These things ought only be given to licensed individuals both with proper flight training and background screening. Every drone needs to federally registered as well. Anything less will be putting the American public in danger.
CNBC.com Article: Drones Set Sights on US Skies
Unmanned drones are typically associated with war and spying. But a new law will permit the use of drones in the US for everything from selling real estate to dusting crops and monitoring oil spills.