The FAA granted UPS a certificate to use drones on medical campuses across the country.
Jim Mayer, UPS public relations manager, explained to TechRepublic how the company can now operate a drone airline. The following is an edited transcript of his explanation.
Jim Mayer: We have reached a turning point in drone aviation. UPS has received a certificate of operation from Part 135 of the FAA. What that means is that UPS now operates a drone airline. We have the authority to operate so many drones with so many operators across the country, and we are planning to grow that operation very quickly. Anything else you've seen from someone else is a test or a demonstration. This is real, and UPS is doing it.
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The important thing is that this is the first Part 135 Certificate that any company has received to operate drones And with that, this is a license to grow. You will see more drone operations in more hospital systems across the country. You will see other use cases. We are going to build an operations center. We have big plans for drones in UPS.
We see a lot of potential for drones. In situations, such as at this time, we are using it on a hospital campus to move blood samples instead of using a courier car.
People will ask, "So they will deliver packages in drones?" That is something that is often distance, we don't really see it, but what really matters is the personal connection that our employees, our drivers, have with their customers. Therefore, we believe that drones complement what they are already doing.