Drones are increasingly popular in Hawaii, and some people want to reign in how and where the unmanned aircraft can be used. A bill — HB314 — would ban using drones to collect personal information and stop them from flying over schools, hospitals, churches or police stations without consent. That bill will be in the House Committee on Commerce and Consumer Protection on Tuesday.
Hawaii lawmakers have introduced a bill that would ban police from using drones to gather evidence without a warrant. The bill would make exceptions for emergencies such as searches and rescues, hostage situations and when there’s an immediate danger to someone.
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In Hawaii, agencies and researchers are integrating drones into their work to not only save taxpayers money but also limit accidents on the job. Drones are giving federal government researchers the ability to model beach erosion along an entire stretch of shoreline in minutes.
For the average consumer, drones are just expensive toys for snowboarders and techies. But for businesses, researchers and government agencies, especially in Hawaii, they’re the latest tool to help them work in faster, safer and cheaper ways. Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), or quad copters, or remote-controlled planes or whatever you want to call them, are being used in Hawaii for some very interesting and cutting-edge tasks, from letting University of Hawaii researchers cheaply calculate rainfall runoff rates to helping the Honolulu Fire Department quickly identify smoldering hot spots during brush fires.
Drone groups and pilots are being encouraged to participate in upcoming second annual Honolulu Mini-Maker Faire! It’s taking place on May 9 at Iolani School. Organizers were able to secure the gym and are would like to make that area aeronautics/drone-themed. Some ideas thrown around include drone races, presentations on some of the positive applications of drones (i.e. searching for lost hikers), etc.
Want to participate? Here’s the link for signing up: