The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is permitting the National Football League (NFL) to utilize drones for filming purposes. The sports league will use drones to shoot films, documentaries, and segments for television, but the technology will not be used to film live games.
The NFL is the first major sports league to receive this kind of permission from the FAA.
The decision arrives three months after the FAA said that it was investigating NFL teams for using drones. Reports say that the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Giants were among the teams that utilized drones. The law states that it is illegal to use unmanned aircraft for any commercial purpose without receiving federal permission.
However, the NFL is still forbidden from using drones to film live games. Additionally, the drones are required to weigh less than 55 pounds, fly no more than 400 feet high and travel less than 100 miles per hour.
The NFL is widely known for its film company NFL Films. The company made major innovations in chronicling football games, including the use of slow motion. NFL Films produces TV programs, films, and documentaries, but not live broadcasts.
NFL Films will only be allowed to operate drones over empty stadiums. They will not be permitted to use drones on game days. Drones will also be forbidden to be employed for the purpose of filming practices.
21st Century FOX is also utilizing drones, as the company used the technology to cover the United States Open golf tournament earlier this year.