Israeli drone delivery company, Flytrex, has received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for drone delivery and flight over people. This makes it possible for Flytrex to expand their drone delivery of retail goods in Fayetteville, NC: “The newly granted waiver permits Flytrex to operate its drone system above people, allowing for the largest-scale backyard drone deliveries of goods known to date.”*
Flytrex makes drone deliveries with their partner, Causey Aviation Unmanned, which also operates as a private manned aircraft service.
Flytrex retail delivery service is available by using an app. This makes it possible for customers to order items from the neighborhood Walmart, Starbucks, and other local restaurants and cafes. This means Flytrex will be able to offer “food, drinks and other goods to thousands of eligible households in the area who can opt-in to the service.”* Customers, therefore, will be able to follow the status of their order until the given package is lowered into their backyard.
However, the FAA approval forbids beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS.). Rather, Flytrex insists on conducting all flights within line of sight and thereby maintaining their “highest safety standards.” The project demonstrates, however, that even within the bounds of visual line of sight (VLOS) flight how many homes can be reached.
Yariv Bash, Co-Founder and CEO of Flytrex, pointed out:
“The FAA approval is important to expanding on-demand drone delivery throughout the US in compliance with the highest possible safety standards. Through this expansion, we will be able to glean valuable insight into usage and customer preferences, allowing us to further tailor our offering to meet consumer needs.With the ongoing help of the FAA, drone delivery will soon become the rule rather than the exception.”*
The on-demand delivery pilot project Flytrex started with Walmart began as early as September of 2020 in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and it is not surprising that recent research indicates that where communities have the opportunity to experience drone delivery they express a high degree of public approval for the program. In fact, additional research shows that the demand for same-day and quick delivery is expected to grow at a 53% CAGR in the near future.
Jeff Causey, Founder and CEO of Causey Aviation Unmanned, points out that Flytrex shares their passion and commitment to bringing the numerous benefits of unmanned aerial delivery to the public: “We are thrilled to announce this benchmark approval with them, and to continue providing swift and safe deliveries to an expanding number of households in North Carolina, and beyond.”*
Flytrex worked closely with the FAA as part of the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) Integration Pilot Program (IPP), as well as the current integration initiative, BEYOND.
North Carolina’s Department of Transportation (NCDOT) Aviation Director. Bobby Waiston, stated:
“Being First in Flight, North Carolina is renowned for its contribution to aviation history. Today, we continue that illustrious record by contributing to unmanned aviation history. In working with our UAS partners over the past several years, we’ve seen the impressive advances these companies have made spearheading on-demand drone delivery in the US, and this latest groundbreaking approval is another milestone in that journey.”*
According to Bash:
“Regulation is crucial to the future of widespread drone delivery, both for safe operations and public acceptance, which is why we have been working diligently with the FAA to adhere to the highest standards of safety. We continually strive to reach new heights when it comes to advancing commercial drone use around the world. That is why we are thrilled to have been chosen to work so closely with the FAA to help this pilot take off. This is just the beginning as we expand the possibilities of sky-bound delivery.”*
Flytrex’s approval from the FAA for drone delivery and flight over people significantly expands their drone delivery of retail goods and thereby makes it possible for the largest-scale backyard drone deliveries of goods known to date. And the fact that the Flytrex retail delivery service is available by using an app. allowing customers to order items from the neighborhood Walmart, Starbucks, and other local restaurants and cafes and even enables them to follow the status of their order until the given package is lowered into their backyard.