U.S. Senator Mark Warner was in Rocky Mount recently where he told a reporter if he were to do the entrepreneur thing all over again, he would be looking strongly at unmanned vehicles, like drones. Warner made a fortune by investing in Nextel when cell phones were just ideas on a chalkboard. According to a Roanoke Time article, localities across the country are waiting to find out if they’ll get permission from federal regulators to conduct drone experiments that are typically banned — a designation U.S. Sen. Mark Warner said he’s been trying to bring to Virginia. The White House announced the UAS Integration Pilot Program in October. It encourages localities to partner with drone companies and submit proposals for far-out experiments, like drone deliveries and long-distance flights over crowds. The idea is to allow these tests in select localities now in order to collect data and inform future drone regulations. Warner said a company like Google will have to choose which localities to go into first. They may want to start small, where the stakes are lower, and work their way up.
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