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Voice of the Aerial Application Industry
April 21, 2022
NAAA Nabs Significant Coverage for News Release Cautioning Unmanned Aircraft Operators Not to Interfere with Low-Altitude Manned Ag Aircraft This Season

With another growing season getting underway at a time when aerial application services are expected to be in high demand, on Monday, NAAA sent a news release to aviation and agricultural media outlets advising unmanned aircraft (UA) operators to be mindful of low-flying manned agricultural aircraft operations. The response was almost immediate.

NAAA’s unmanned aircraft advisory received significant pickup from media outlets such as Farm Journal’s AgWeb, CropLife News, AVweb, Vertical Magazine, AirMed&Rescue magazine, State Aviation Journal, RFD-TV’s Market Day Report, the Southeast AgNet Radio Network, WOWO News/Talk radio, broadcasting from Fort Wayne, Indiana, The Mighty 790 KFGO radio in Fargo, North Dakota, News Dakota, 6Park News in Colorado, and an upcoming episode of “Farm Life Live” on Farm Life Media’s social media network. News of NAAA’s unmanned aircraft advisory even spread to the Australian website Farm Table.

The press release recommends that unmanned aircraft operators:

  • Give the right of way to a manned aircraft. It’s the law.
  • Equip drones with tracking technology, such as ADS-B In, so you will know ADS-B Out-equipped manned aircraft positions.
  • Get certified and well-trained in operating an unmanned aircraft.
  • Contact local agricultural aviation operations before flying by consulting
  • Equip UAs with visible strobe lights and high visibility marking. 
  • Land an unmanned aircraft immediately when a low-flying aircraft is nearby.
  • Carry UA liability insurance.

The news release also garnered a return invitation for NAAA CEO Andrew Moore to appear on RFD-TV’s daily news program. He addressed drone and ag aviator safety issues on RFD-TV’s Market Day Report on April 19. During the live phone interview, Moore was asked how common encounters between manned ag aircraft and drones are. He also explained some of NAAA’s key recommendations to unmanned aircraft operators and why the association is expecting a huge year for aerial applicators this season. Watch the full interview below.

Agricultural aviators treat 127 million acres of cropland in the United States each year and perform a variety of services that help farmers increase productivity and protect their crops.

“With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine restricting a huge portion of the world’s food supply, we cannot afford even a small disruption in the nation’s food supply chain,” Moore said in the news release. “Agricultural aviators deliver nutrients, seeds and crop protection products to crops that will become consumers’ food and fiber supply in the U.S. and around the world. Their work cannot be delayed because of an unmanned aircraft not yielding to them, as is required by law. 2021 was a big year for aerial applicators, and we expect demand for aerial application services to be even higher in 2022.”

This is the sixth year NAAA has reached out to the media regarding safe UAV operations heading into the spring growing season.

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This newsletter is intended for NAAA members only. NAAA requests that should any party desire to publish, distribute or quote any part of this newsletter that they first seek the permission of the Association. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent those of the National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA), its Board of Directors, staff or membership. Items in this newsletter are not the result of paid advertising and are only meant to highlight newsworthy developments. No endorsement by NAAA is intended or implied.
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NAAA Award Nomination Forms
Agriculture’s Air Force Book
Aerial Applicators’ Growing Role Video Download Files
GPS Data Collection Project to Protect Ag Aircraft from Drones
Aerial Application Tax Tips
2022 NAAA “Ag Wings of Tomorrow” Scholarship
Agricultural Aviation Mag.
NAAA/NAAREF Safety Videos
Tower Outreach Tools
Tower Marking Warning Letters
Shooting-Response Checklist
NAAA UAV Safety Stuffers
NAAA UAV Encounter Checklist
NAAA Media Relations Kit
Ag Aviation 101 Presentation
NAAA Professional Operating Guidelines Booklet
Aerial Applicator’s Manual
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