AVweb flash

FAA Releases Commercial Drone Rule »

The FAA today published its final rule for the commercial use of small drones under 55 pounds. The rule requires commercial drone operators to be at least 16 years old, pass a security background check and hold a “remote pilot certificate,” which can be attained by passing an “initial aeronautical knowledge test” at an FAA-approved test center. Operators also can qualify if they have a current FAA pilot certificate and take an online UAS course from the FAA. More

Viking Air Acquires Bombardier Water Bombers »

Bombardier will sell its amphibious aircraft program to Viking Air Ltd., the two Canadian companies announced today. The agreement covers the type certificates for all variants of the CL-215, CL-215T and Bombardier 415 airplanes, which are used worldwide as water bombers for firefighting. “This transaction supports our goal of rebuilding a clear path to profitable earnings growth,” said Alain Bellemare, CEO of Bombardier Inc. More

Three Off-Airport Crashes, One Pilot Killed »

Three small general aviation airplanes have crashed at off-airport sites in the last two days, killing one pilot and injuring another. In Houston, Texas, a Piper PA-24 crashed onto the flat roof of a Macy’s distribution center about five miles northwest of Hobby Airport, just before midnight on Sunday. "I was watching it, and I just seen it like struggle," witness Jonathan Siguenza told the local Click-2 news. The FAA said the 52-year-old pilot was flying in from St. Louis when the airplane lost power. More

Solar Impulse Atlantic Leg Starts Monday »

Solar Impulse 2 is expected to launch from New York to Seville, Spain, Monday on the longest leg of its circumnavigation using solar power only. More

South Pole Rescue Launched »

Two Canadian Twin Otter aircraft are in Punta Arenas at the southern tip of Chile waiting out weather to launch a rescue at the South Pole. More