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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  October 9, 2015 8:00am-9:01am EDT

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about the tombstone mentality in i am very concerned what this means for civil aviation in this country and beyond that i am concerned it will bring to a halt the commercial development of drones they are operating irresponsibly this industry will grind to a halt to you have anything you want to read? so with those little piston engines that to the work very well.
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with all whole new generation of people that sulfone edit it doesn't go together now getting their hands on the drones. >> i agree to differentiate the point of his members that were responsible operators and those not part of his community they do have batteries their heavy metal pieces that will wreak havoc on aircraft when it hits there will be a significant event. is a diffident whether the windscreen or the internet will be significant for the flight crew and will be challenging to save the aircraft. >> okay. anybody want to comment? to make it is not my intent
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to scare anybody but it will be a significant event civic you cannot particular point to say that is the sole cause we look at the risk that we deal with in commercial aviation to a sign risk weather, traffic, a communication and cybersecurity real look under every single element this is another element should happen that it's time already dealing with a malfunction and then we hit the drone? always the neck critical phase of flight that is the highest risk of an accident.
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>> you cannot point to a single solution has to be layered. >>. >> ag for holding this hearing. what is today's date? >> the october 7, 2015. the legislation that we passed in 2012 the modernization reform act had a directive to do the faa and what deadline didn't set -- did it set for you to finish the work that was assigned? >> september 2015. >> so you are behind schedule obviously.
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if you review the record when repast this in in 2012 that by next year 2013 you had completed the plan that was required under the law you didn't propose the rule until january 20 of this year. the rule came out in february now we're just into october's you have had eight months and now you say, does
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the rule just deal with the small aircraft? >> everything under 55 pounds. >> we allow that differentiation between small and large. at lease the testimony can you be more specific? to read that comment period was open through april with over 4500 comments. >> is to get the rule out with the review process the last five we discussed this week agreed on the date of june, the first half of next
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year. >> development of large integration will depend on commercial demand and that will probably. this the schedule is a very serious accident and i can predict that it is almost inevitable to have major road hit and aircraft there will probably be injuries and hopefully not fatalities. these drones are up at 55 pounds leggett said testing center dave broder of 40 lb frozen turkey i saw
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what that did i don't need another test to show but it probably will have been. how many incidents? is it 200 or 400? >> we don't keep the records >> faa do you know, ? decorate -- react 25 per month. >> now 20 enforcement actions? >> civil penalties. >> with your plan and i have not reviewed them but you have a provision hundreds of thousands of days are being
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sold that says you cannot fly this that is not required on the sale of the unit. is headed your proposal? can you do that or should we do that by law? just letting people know with a purchase one of these is important. >> we're working with manufacturers. >> did your proposed rule? to make it deals with commercial operations in the amateur operators and the increasing never do that now to have a rule mandated. >> thank you. i yield back. >>.
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>> my first question is for mr. hanson regarding data uas near misses death in - - did they have a data collection program underway how does as a stingier statement is much lower. >> it does not collect the data. and i think it is important to note what is termed as xavier missile a midair collision it was a
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subjective term it does not have a defying definition or a definitive definition with the and the aircraft so realistically to the language itself to pull out the ones that report the siding - - and the siding is a -- deciding to take evasive action many could not even be termed a year encounter of any kind it was even identified to be an aircraft. >> you have been a definition of near miss that should be standardized? >> you will have to do some analysis of the environment
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the captive inside ted very slow moving objects that wins seen from the cockpit it is difficult to have a relative value of sizers speed or intentions so in terms of what would constitute a your missive is probably from the perspective of the pot - - pilot into appropriately take action that there isn't an airspace conflict. >> i agree we need to have good data on which to do that. i represent one of a most forested district in the country with though terrific
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wildfires we try to do something set is different from suppression so what about fire prevention in a healthy forest? >> bay are useful and what we're dealing with in the land. that overflight to give a good assessment without that expense of the ground is very helpful. >> back to suppression, how you intend to use uas in fire suppression in efforts? >> to keep track of what is going on with the cruz of the ground how the big fire is behaving to make sure nobody is in harm's way it
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have the right kind of communication in case they need to move quickly. >> we had a tragic situation where our firefighting crew did not know the direction of the fire and it changed dramatically. wood said 29 be helpful to prevent that tragedy? >> that is difficult for our would have liked to had it available. >> i yield back. >> you were talking about the need to register drones is that all of them or is there a size limits or a
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cutoff point war is won a toy that you don't have to give your identity to the federal government? >> to analyze the capabilities of the vehicle of the altitude range and speed to see if they could end up in aerospace. >> i could go on to amazon this is the best selling they have $45.90 i could have it by friday i and the amazon prime member by friday for free shipping is 1 pound with a range of 50 meters that is 165 b. shirley you're not saying this should be registered. >> but up at 1500 feet, yes of - - yes, sir. >> i am not sure if that
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rage is lateral or transmitter or physical capability orphic continues to climb. >> i have spoken in tucson in the industry that have expressed an interest to work with you. is there any way a manufacturer could get a list of restricted airspace? >> it is all publicly available and pushed out from ed a son manufacturers have started to include that in their products. >> so there is a standardized data based updated regularly?
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in those to give interim updates. >> you could get that computerized to keep the database of registered owners that seems pretty simple of name in address i could probably coated that before we finish lunch. >> then we need to verify that is the person who actually registers that. >>. >> is there a way to integrate into the air traffic control system by putting a transponder or air traffic controller? it seems like they could get
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that on the chip so with him richer use space to keep -- keep them out of airports by the there is the question with a radio signal to attract them otherwise anything that operates in a controlled airspace would be after 2020 but that is to have that integration from new york. >> talk about the recreational users to stick a go. or a camera on the drone then upload that and then where do you cross the line into commercial use?
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>> i think it is a pretty common use of recreational drones commercial is it your paid to operate or is part of your business model. >> i could see potential gray areas and with the shot at a lemonade stand you cross that line. with those recreational users better being reckless but then to find the right balance between but not over regulating but i see my time
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is expired. >> given my congressional district the sheriff's department is the only public agency that uses uas besides the navy. the shares are part has received a certificate but for search and rescue every time the shares of is operates and also a to file a notice they take this out of the abundance of caution
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is that what they would consider in terms of their requirement that other teeeight nine but have to do? >> this is the interim step to notify other users in the system. >> stowe what is the backlog right now? what is the current demand?
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we have clear the backlog but they're coming in at a pretty big flip. >> you know, how many uas are operated begins commercial applications? >> with the indications with the of clamps the numbers are too big tear track. >> with the uas over 500 feet. >>. >> can you give me a sense how many you are involved in with the special contract
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for specific use? >> we tried to recruit them as much as possible with literally thousands these vehicles are here now. >> so the civil penalties? >> several hundred investigations under the compliance policy and there are cases that require a. >> where the civil penalties? >> the base line is $25,000 in the case of the penalty over a heavily populated area.
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does the faa have any specific recommendations to improve the enforcement authority for civil penalties? >> we are a buy rating other agencies of the 250,000 on the criminal side that level is evaluated interagency the most bang for the book comes to education on the enforcement side there is a challenge of the operators. >> with that education peace is there a legal barrier to prevent the faa to require manufacturers to include the safety information on
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packaging? >> we are prohibited for regulating for recreational use for it is possible we could do a rule making around that but the time frame it isn't a viable tool so we are focused on voluntary compliance. >> as the pilot represents the airforce base i suggest there is more unanimity among you that i have seen in a long time. we are one severe accident away over a public human cry why haven't we done something. . .
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they don't survive well. they are small. and i would say, it gives the assumption that people have perfect information, that people call, investigate, do their homework. and i know as a pilot, people do not. i want to ask, it is my kind of unconsidered opinion that these things do not belong near airports. and to that end -- and what
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kind of -- and you talked a lot about this in your statement. what kind of training do you think is appropriate for the people that are flying these larger ones or anyone, if you will, that you would like to see? >> well, the vehicle intended to be operated in shared airspace than i think the standard is very close to established if not already established. it exists for us as a pilot to complete our training, recurrent training, and maintain qualifications. if the vehicle is not intended to operate in the airspace is a matter of putting proper mitigation to keep it off. and that is the importance of the educational campaign that we all agree on a peer. one element of the educational campaign is, we
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should consider testing were someone goes online,, recent material, and takes a little test that satisfies the parents that the child knows how to operate the material -- operate the vehicle. >> pick a different tune take a different airspace, do you accept what he said? that you don't -- you should be -- you should have commercial training or training as if aa pilot to fly and airspace that may have the ground levels? >> ii think we take a little different approach to it. we consider all airspace shared airspace. there is always the possibility of encountering amend airspace.
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>> we talk about flying in closer proximity to an airport. the primary tenants is not. we have a document the talks about how model aircraft should see and avoid command to the credit there have not been significant conflict. >> why is it important that you operate in the same airspace that would be an airport? what drives you to think that? i am not saying you don't have a right to. >> it goes to the point that not all airports are created equal. we have some and communities where they are welcome to operate. we have clubs that are co- located. >> i have seen many.
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>> and they have coordinating procedures that allow them to operate. >> i. >> i would suggest there are places where you would say you shouldn't be maybe in c and b space to the ground and places where you could, just general space and i grass strip in the middle of cooperstown, new york. >> there is no doubt, there are locations where these types of devices should not be flown. it is not as easy and answer >> i guess what i am suggesting is, you have a lot in common here. rather than fight for something unreasonable you may want to think about what is important to the people who operate these things for agriculture and recreation at the types of reports that you just described. thank you. my time is expired. >> to the gentleman from california. >> thank you, mr. chairman, ranking member, thank you
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for the hearing. mr. larson, you opened the issue of registration. you mentioned picking up his smart phone at amazon. is registered. and most everything you buy today is registered, at least back to the manufacturer in some way or another. it seemsit seems to me we do not need a government registration program, but we need the government to be able to access the program that the manufacturers probably already have.have. we could spend several years trying to write regulation to accomplish that, which is probably what we will do because it is our specialty. why don't we simply say, all of these you a esses must be registered, held by the manufacturer or the seller of that and the government has the ability to access that under circumstances
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relating to an accident or some other incident? fairly simple,simple, but probably far too simple for her normal work around here. if you are flying this uas near significant airport there are some of airport your subject to a fine or jail time. and if you're flying near an active fire your subject to a fine and jail fine. that would immediately educate everyone involved in this sport or commercial activity. the the other way around the study, study, study for those who don't want any interference by anybody.
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anyway, i propose legislation introduced now today the simply says, if you are flying a uas within 2 miles of a significant airport, you are breaking the law and are subject to one year in jail and a significant fine. if you are find your an active fire, you are breaking the law and are subject to one year in jail. now, that is a pretty clear message. so, what do you think of that since you tends to fight fires? >> i thinki think we need some help of some kind because but we are fighting fire we are at very low altitude and in very complex situations with a lot of distraction, not the least of which is smoke. so, the sense is very
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difficult.difficult. if the technology is not there for the sense and avoid, we have to turn to the education a regulation. >> captain. >> yes, sir. >> i love the see it. i can't wait to read it because i think it is a step in the right direction. with the limitation of 2 miles assuming the threshold is a mile from that point the vehicles could be well above me. from the end of the runway. it should be larger, especially if you look at class b airspace around atlanta all miami dropping down to the surface. we don't want anyone operating officer for said all in less they are talking to air traffic control and being controlled by air-traffic control. >> how about our little hobbyist?
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>> it has been a long time since i have been called little. the devil, i think, is always in the details. >> very good machines. >> the devil is always in the details. at some airports 2 miles might not be far enough, others it may be adequate or even too far. i mean, if you are a homeowner within that distance and wish to buy your grandson one of these toys that can be flown in the backyard, i would hate to see him subject to a one-year jail penalty for flying it in his backyard. i would be interested in seeing the language of the proposed bill and having an opportunity to comment on it. >> i will see that you have it in a few moments. we get tied up in details here. in the meantime, a time will pass, and the accident is going to happen.
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the incident is going to happen. not sure that it is an accident,accident, but the incident will happen. in california we have had numerous fires and we are now facing a situation where those fires have expanded as a result of drones shutting down the aerial operations, operations, and we have also had more than enough incidents in the airspace around airports as was testified to. so it is time for a simply to lay down a marker here and say, if you are operating a you a as in these spaces, you are violating the law and are subject to a severe penalty. now, that is the kind of education program that someone might pay attention to. and to your grandchildren happen to be near that runway and are flying in they are little you a s that you kindly bought them, that is somehow interfering with the approach of the captain into atlanta airport, i'm
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sorry, but the kid is breaking the law and as a responsible adult you should also be held accountable. because we are talking about serious, very serious potential problems. i yield back my time and i will deliver a copy of the legislation to you. >> mr. whitaker,mr. whitaker,mrr , it seems to me that folks in general aviation could work closely with drone operators and owners to help educate and train all these roles that are forthcoming in different, best practices for operation. reaching out to associations >> this question of airspace and how us to find.
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the small airport association. >> i could report back to you in 30 days. >> thank you very much. and indiana they're are farm
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operations 247 starting right now, and the proposed rule only allows day operations. are you considering modifying not at all or will you be strict on the day operations? i could see in a farm field where these machines been used on the clock. as soon as we can find ways to do that safely that something would like to allow. >> how do your members no, we talk about these near miss sightings and reports, how do you know is what they saw versus balloon that i can't let go a while ago, which i see in my aircraft from time to time. safely, of course, or even a ufo, anywhere from 11 to 3:00 a.m.
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how do we know we saw you a s, and what specifically is done to verify? >> there are a redundant set of eyes in the cockpit and hopefully both pilots can later eyes on the cockpit. >> not always. there are small vehicles. >> it's hard to see these things. you were picked on having 20 civil penalty cases. he cannot verify that these were even uas to begin with. you have to rely on the pilot opinion of what he saw. we do see a lot of balloons. it's not like we should accept the premise that all of these are near mrs.
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>> there are quite a few more. with the proliferation of the expansion, million more, even if a small percentage were us -- uas, we have a problem. >> that may be. there are millions of birds, too. >> that reminds me, you talk about canadian geese being so much heavier. the assumption in your testimony is that birds are still certainly or potentially more dangerous. the captain says, well, there are metal batteries in these things. can you elaborate on your testimony? >> definitely. it depends entirely upon the platform. there is one that came out last week that can sit on your fingertips and weigh
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the same as three pennies. therepennies. there are others like the phantom that is a 3rd the weight of the canada goose. there are others that have a 10-foot wingspan and weigh 30 pounds. so it really depends. >> you cannot quantify it. >> and the time i have remainingi have remaining i want to go into the commercial licensing structure. your organization is recommending a commercial pilots license. the flight characteristics of these drones, the stall characteristics are completely different. i have a commercial license. i do not understand why we need a commercial license. i am wanting to assume it is simply because you are worried about job protection, one day these operators might or unmanned vehicles might take away a pilots job. >> that is not the concern with the commercial operations. operations for renumeration all modes of transportation
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be a taxicab, airplane, seagoing vessel all require commercial operations. >> because it is revenue generated. >> you are worried about the revenue-generating impact, not necessarily the safety. >> a higher expectation of safety. >> my time is expired. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> i'm not i'm not going to say anything you don't already know. let's be perfectly honest. i just got off the plane. i guarantee you everyone you represent will get sued. if you put me on a jury on a case like that, you will all lose. we can do something. it might not be perfect. i am sure it is not. but doing nothing in the face of clear danger is not an excuse to be perfectly honest. getting it right over time, fine, but we should be doing stuff.
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i own two drones about big ones. i don't know what i'm doing with them either. i stink at it which, of course, is a danger. i don't know about the 2-mile limit on the airport. i live within 2 miles. i don't know. i would not intentionally trytried to bring down the plane. christmas presents, christmas days. at drone you could get out of brookstone, nothing special. this is crazy. we can do it to automobiles. we can do it in my phone. if i drop this phone today, right now some smart 15-year-old technology kids to figure out where i bought it, who it belongs to, where i was yesterday, who are called. yet if yesterday, who are called.
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yet if it happens to a drone, nobody knows. ii saw something. i don't know what it was. come on. you can put technology on it , even something as small as your finger. i can find people who can do it, nevermind the regulations. i am all for those. not a problem. i am am not trying to shut down the technology at all. it is opening up a wonderful new frontier for hobbyists and professionals on all levels. but it also presents a danger which should not be accepted. just because it is difficult does not mean that we should not do something. so i don't really have any questions because i no that you can do it. i just see a reluctance, especially reluctance, especially from the faa, and i do not understand it. do something before somebody loses their life on this. i don't want to be here yelling at you. that is no fun. and i certainly don't want to be a let you -- the
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yelling at you over someone i know and love are someone you know what love. this is crazy. just get it done. it done. i understand it will not be the last item and it is an evolving thing. coming up with smaller things and bigger uses.uses. i'm not so sure about the 2-mile radius. i also know that there are some places beyond 2 miles bird does. i am not sure what the answer is. you know it. i am not trying to involve myself will prohibit hobbyists from doing anything reasonable or thoughtful. 99 percent of the people using these things are well intended. automobiles on 15 different places. accidents happen. bad people out there doing bad things, we havethings, we have not done anything i know of to allow us to find them. someone intentionally goes out to logan airport and
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flies a drone intentionally into a plane to kill somebody comeau we have allow the technology to not exists. to be able to find that perpetrators are you can have the criminal prosecutions in the world. world. if you can't find them it's not going to help. you can find my phone, my automobile. probably my underwear. i don't know. wewe cannot find a drone owners because we have not required a simple item to be installed. if you want to do size, do size. by the way, and loganway, and logan we get a lot of geese. you cannot control them. but we chase them around. they have a great time. we do something. maybemaybe they are better ways to do it, but we do something, always better than nothing in the face of a known danger. i was not going to say anything you do not already know.
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>> thank you, mr. chairman, doctor k, let me go to you in your opening testimony you talked about midair collisions and how the magnitude would be more significant in certain areas and negligible and others. can you elaborate a little bit more on that? you would assume most of it would be safe,safe, but there are a number of small airstrips coming grass strips, etc. >> so when i was at lincoln laboratory we got a stream of data from all of the faa radar and estimated the density across the united states. there are a lot of areas where we just did not see anything in nine months.
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>> so could we put forth certain counties where we have zone free drone three zones or drone permissible, are there certain counties across the country where there is relatively little, if no chance of having interaction with aircraft? >> i guess that could be -- >> that is a loaded question,a loaded question, but go ahead. >> it's been so much upon altitude. so that has to be part of the figure. even over rural north dakota or whatever, you should not be at 20,000 feet. >> let me go further than. how would you classify near miss? >> i did a lot of collision risk estimation.
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itit is a collision avoidance system for manned aircraft. and as part of the analysis we use the definition of 500 fed 100 feet vertically. that is wherethat is where manned aircraft. there is nothing magical about this definition. >> captain, would you agree with that definition? >> currently there exists a criteria for near miss. >> talking about his definition, would that be satisfactory? >> i do not believe so because it does not reside anywhere near what we would need to avoid the collision. >> can you get to the chairman what you would estimate a near miss would be? >> i am not sure we are equipped to do that analysis, sir. >> can you query your pilots .
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. >> we can ask them. >> let me go really quickly and finish out mr. whitaker. some have suggested your rule-making has not been expeditious. and i believe in your earlier testimony here you were talking about doing rule-making for commercial drones butbut i guess you said the commercial viability and economic viability increases. did i hear you correctly on that? >> i think the question was around large. >> there is a certain mentality. your testimony is, if you build it they will regulated >> are trying to move in lockstep. >> let me suggest that you are more forward thinking in terms of regulations.
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the ambiguity creates the kind of dynamics we have here today both on the commercial and on the side of things. the more finite that you can be the better the commercial activity will be in terms of meeting your expectation if we wait until -- to draw the regulations, until we have problems as we were trying to do today. it creates much uncertainty in the market. wouldn't you agree? >> yes, sir. >> how do we best, and allow us. lose out to the drone technology in europe, other testimony would suggest that. how do we make sure that you are nimble and do that
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effectively? and i am out of time, so i will yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i believe there is a definition that is larger than what the professor mentioned. i would like to direct my comments to the administrative. if any of the rest of you want to weigh in, i appreciate that. i represent las vegas and was a strong proponent of nevada being named one of the original test centers. you mentioned that they are there for collaboration and research. what seems to have happened is, these test sites have fizzled out. they do not know what the goal is go with they should be doing. i would like to get you to comment on that. what can these test sites be doing to encourage and
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support? it seems like the faa has all of its attention on granting these section 333 exceptions as opposed to working with the test sites. i would also ask you, when you grant these exceptions, do you continue to get information from these facilities that now can fly? how do you use that information to inform this process of regulation development? >> the private sector can use them and other researchers can use them for flight tests and other testing. we tried to streamline the approval process to a large degree which i think we have done, but at the same time they are designed to be a
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marketplace.a marketplace. some test sites have been more successful than others. we have been meeting with all the test sites over the next two months to try to help jumpstart and facilitate some of that work. >> anyone else care to comment? >> i think industry, as they start to see the value of the test site because i'm not a technician or designer. the company that comes up with a small, lightweight, universally powered, active collision avoidance system that is priced at that.that can be placed on almost any aerial system will make a lot of money. the best place to test these are the existing test sites.
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>> i would like to go back to the administrator. part of my question was about granting this section 333 exemptions which seems to be where most of your energy and effort is concentrated now, supporting technology and testing and data collection. is that accurate? >> i would say those are different functions. it certainly got a lot of attention, but it is a different group that does not. we have research going on in conjunction with nasa, dod, and the center of excellence. we are focused on all of those things. >> do you get information back? >> we do have some commercial partnerships were we are taking a dating and analyzing it. >> wouldn't that be helpful? >> it is not a restriction. we have issued 18333 exemptions.
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>> so you don't think it will be helpful? >> it might be helpful. >> it is voluntary. >> that's correct. >> if you look at the way the agency is set up, is there more priority and effort and energy put into these exemptions? >> i would say that they are not linked. >> a different workforce. >> isn't that where the priorities are not? >> priority would be on both of those.
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>> we measured at 333's my throughput and on the test site and research it is not amenable to an immediate metric measurement, but there is a lot of effort going in that. >> the gentle lady yields back. >> thank you, chairman. >> if it's not the future, it certainly the next frontier. there has been a longtime fascination going back to the days of da vinci and moving forward to the wright brothers and that we want to encourage innovation on that front and in general government regulation, regulation, control, and other inhibits that regulation and is vital ultimately to american competitiveness.
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if you want to have kids out there fiddling with something, at the base level kids in the basement or garage working with some of the stuff may well lead to innovations and new developments that i think could have commercial applications and so what has hit me is how we get to a place that is minimally invasive with regard to unmanned and how do we get to a place that keeps government out of involvement as much as possible so that we maximize individual freedom without in any way interrupting commercial flight or noncommercial flight. my colleague, how do we come up with something that's
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really simple: there is the kind of legislation we talked about so you don't end up with a bunch of things being tacked onto this how do you keep up with some massive database and we have to hire more. 90% of folks who would not be a problem. how do they do something quite simple, whether it is think your monday language or something else. i guess i begin with you. any ideas on something that may have seen. >> i think an altitude limit is minimally invasive. very easy to implement, not something that we can do now. >> but it would not solve
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the problem. you get to 400 feet. >> trying to solve the whole problem is very complicated. >> we will keep it moving. 400 feet is something -- >> okay, that would be your vote. we'll keep it moving. mr. hanson, your thought, quick thought, most simple remedy would be what? >> i believe the community based approach has proven for decades to be an effective way of handling at least the small aircraft/hobby environment, and i would look to that to continue keeping this going. >> community based model. >> so outside of the community based, those who are operating outside of that, if there was a way to restrict the enabling of the vehicle when you purchase it until a code is put in. you node to get that code. you have to go onli

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