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Are passenger drones likely to take off?




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Safety a big concern

What’s to stop passenger drones from plunging out the sky, killing the occupant? These are the types of questions regulators are asking. Surely the greatest fear of jumping into a small flying drone is some massive system failure results in the drone and you plunging to earth and being smashed into oblivion? Luckily the developers of these drones are thinking of these things.

No one will be flying anywhere unless this technology proves itself to be consistently safe over an extended period of time. To add a significant number of flying vehicles into our skies will create many logistical issues. New laws will need to be drafted that govern flight routes, rules for flying and create restricted airspace for these drones. If one really thinks about it, every day millions of people around the world pile into giant metal tubes that catapult them across countries, oceans and continents without much of a thought. 2017 was the safest year ever to fly with the chance of being in a plane accident 1 for every 1.2 million flights. Perhaps, once passenger drones manufacturers can prove themselves to be consistently safe, the public interest and sales of these crafts will dramatically increase.

How much will these things cost and who will be able to fly them?

It’s all well and good to have amazing new technology but if each drone is incredibly expensive – they won’t be accessible for most people and therefore the chances of them revolutionizing society drop dramatically. At present, passenger drones are set to be between $200,000-$300,000 – putting them firmly in the class of toys for the rich. Over time, we can expect the cost of technology to come down and for cheaper models to be released. As for flying them; it seems like current models require a pilot’s license to operate. Depending on the manufacturer of these drones, some may be totally automated while others can be controlled by the user. We should not hold our breath that the skies will be jammed with passenger cars any time soon but, at the very least,  we are on a path that offers some exciting possibilities.

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