Drones as Christmas presents has FAA concerned - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Drones as Christmas presents has FAA concerned

Pit Row Hobby Shop in Kenwood has sold tons of drones already this holiday season (FOX19/Lisa Hutson) Pit Row Hobby Shop in Kenwood has sold tons of drones already this holiday season (FOX19/Lisa Hutson)

Drone manufacturers are estimating this Christmas tens of thousands of kids of all ages across the country will receive unmanned aircraft systems (UAV) as presents. A neat toy to play with on Christmas morning but so many in the air has the FAA worried.

At Pit Row Hobby Shop on Montgomery Road across from Kenwood mall, drones are flying off the shelves. With prices ranging from $40-$1,000 unmanned aircraft systems are more popular than ever.

"That is an actual live view of what it is seeing,” said Jonathan Hornsby flying his recreational quadcopter in the parking lot.

A camera controlled by Hornsby's phone can snap pictures and video from all angles on the drone. A tool that comes in handy for the professional photographer of Blulense Photography.

"It's really simple to fly. It's mainly controlled by the up down movement left and right,” said Hornsby.

Hornsby dropped by the Hobby Shop looking for a few accessories to his drone but dozens of others showed up ready to buy them as gifts.

"A lot of kids, adults, everyone is getting them. They are really fun. They are easy to fly and as you see they are super stable,” said Martin Hollatz, an employee of Pit Row Hobby Shop.

But it's the ease of flight that has the FAA worried.

"How do you make sure you stay off the naughty list? We want you to know before you fly,” says a video PSA found on www.knowbeforeyoufly.com.

It is a website created by UAV industry trade leaders in conjunction with the FAA. It is an attempt to educate the thousands of new fliers expected to pop up in 2015. The website gives several rules including not flying your UAV above 400 feet, keeping it away from airports or other manned aircraft and taking a lesson on flying your drone before you hit the sky.

They are rules Martin Hollatz says responsible drone users support hoping everyone can enjoy the new technology safely.

"They are very safe to fly as long as you have somebody that is not going to go crazy with it,” said Hollatz

Right now, the FAA says they are still working on developing more concrete regulation concerning the recreational use of drones.

You can read more about the do's and don'ts of drone use at www.knowbeforeyoufly.com.

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Drone safety guidelines to be released Monday

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