Don’t Worry They’re Here…
Technology has a way of sweeping over the public before it is ready for regulation. Witness Craigslist, Facebook, Twitter and Uber.
The next areas where we can expect issues to arise pertain to the use of drones. Amazon indicated last year that it may utilize unmanned drones to deliver packages to individual residences. There are also other entities which would like to incorporate drones into their business operations. Real estate companies are using Drones to take pictures of their prospective listings.
Aside from concerns raised by the Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) and the Department of Transportation (“DOT”), there are a multitude of issues associated with drones and condominium associations. These include landing in the common areas and any liability associated with the same. Covenant restrictions should address concerns related to both the location and time for the use of drones on association property and determining how close to the units a drone can travel before it constitutes trespass. Finally, will insurance companies be ready to address issues associated with the use of drones?
Our newer condominium documents contain the following provisions regarding drones:
“No drones or other remote-controlled aerial equipment, toys or vehicles shall be used anywhere on the condominium common areas and facilities. No unit owner shall receive deliveries by drone.”
It is likely that as time progresses there will be governmental regulation regarding drones very similar to the regulation surrounding satellite dishes. As we publish this newsletter, the FAA and DOT have just released proposed rules for small unmanned aircraft. These can be found at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/rulemaking/media/021515_sUAS_Summary.pdf.
However, notwithstanding any of the aforementioned concerns regarding drones, in the words used by Judy Collins regarding clowns…don’t worry they’re here!