FAA approves use of drones by Town of Hanover, Massachusetts

The Town of Hanover has received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for its drone program, the first municipality in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to have licensed pilots and a FAA approved Air Wing for municipal operation of its unmanned aircraft, the Association of Professional Drone Pilots (APDP)said.

Working in consultation with the APDP, the town has licensed and trained pilots to operate its unmanned aircraft, including representatives of the Police and Fire departments, as well as Hanover Community Television. Through an extensive training and application process, the town has received a Certificate of Authorization to legally operate its drone in town.

Six Hanover employees have taken the initial training required for licensure, and more are expected to be trained. The Town is developing a protocol for deployment. Since existing staff operate the drones, there are no additional costs to the town.