Drones- While Some Risks Decrease, Others Arise
The personal and commercial use of Unmanned Aircraft Systems is no longer a goal for the future but an accomplishment of the present. UAS technology is being implemented for personal and recreational use as well as for commercial advancement. Businesses are finding different avenues to utilize this technology to increase production and expand their reach such as inspecting rural facilities, flying banners for advertisements and taking aerial pictures. Although a large amount of corporations and individuals are already using these products, regulations are still being developed by the Federal Aviation Administration, meaning that specifics on restrictions and the risks that may be posed are still unclear. The use of a UAS, also known as drones, will continue to advance and it is important to assess the potential risk that may ensue and gain the proper protection that is available. Under the majority of personal liability and commercial general liability policies there lies an aircraft exclusion. Drones of all sizes and capabilities are not covered based on that exclusion. This lack of protection against and for drones has been recognized by insurance carriers across the country and many have begun developing new policies that address this threat. Risks to consider are personal injury, invasion of privacy due to surveillance and data collection as well as property and workers compensation. In order for carriers to compile a comprehensive and effective policy, specific information must be gathered. The information that will be necessary to obtain will be the drones function and intent, the flight plan and location as well as the information that is sought out to be gathered.
A large handful of individuals and corporations believe that utilizing unmanned aircraft system technology will decrease overall risk as well as benefit the future of many different businesses and endeavors. Although portions of this theory may be true, while some risks decrease, others arise.
The main piece of advice that Swingle Collins & Associates would like to pass along would be to be aware of these exclusions, remain up to date on current events regarding this technology and to build a relationship with a broker that is knowledgeable in this industry. Policies are evolving and it is important to have a team behind you that is focused and equipped with the right questions to ask. Ensure your protection today and partner with Swingle Collins & Associates.