USAA and AIG are the latest insurers to gain Federal Aviation Administration approval to test drones. USAA wants to research how the unmanned aerial vehicles could speed review of insurance claims following natural disasters. State Farm previously announced it had received approval to conduct similar testing.
The company filed an application with the FAA to test drones late last year. At the time, it filed for an exemption to enable more efficient testing of small drones.
In a recently issued press release, USAA announced that it can now fly drones, made by U.S.-based PrecisionHawk, during the day within line-of-sight of a trained pilot and air crew.
The company reported that it filed for an additional FAA exemption in November that will enhance its ability to use drones in catastrophes. That exemption petition is pending approval with a decision expected soon.
AIG announced that it had received approval from the FAA to operate drones to conduct inspections for risk assessment, risk management, loss control and surety performance for customers in the U.S.
According to AIG, the company has already established an international UAV research and development program and conducted flights in New Zealand. The flights have provided insights on technology, flight operations, and image collection techniques that will be incorporated into AIG’s global UAV strategy.
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