FAA set to release new guidelines for drones

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Virginia firm that makes industrial-grade drones for ship inspections and other work says business will take off this summer when federal regulations change.

The new guidelines from the Federal Aviation Administration will take effect Aug. 29 and lower training requirements. For instance, drone operators no longer will have to be licensed pilots.

The co-founder of the Yorktown-based company Avid says he anticipates hiring 20 to 30 workers over the next couple of years. The company focuses on hiring vets with experience in aeronautic maintenance.

Avid’s custom-built vehicles weigh up to 55 pounds and cost up to $20,000. They can be used for anything from search-and-rescue missions to radiation detection at construction sites.

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