Idaho colleges to offer drone piloting classes

Posted at 12:40 PM, Jan 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-19 14:40:50-05

Two community colleges in Idaho will offer classes on piloting unmanned aerial vehicles to train people for jobs in the growing commercial drone industry.

The Capital Press reports Brad Ward, President of Hayden-based drone company Empire Unmanned, will teach the first two-day class at North Idaho College in February. Company co-founder Steve Edgar will teach another course at Treasure Valley Community College.

Ward anticipates offering courses every other month, depending on demand.

The Federal Aviation Administration last summer removed a requirement that drone operators also be licensed to pilot manned aircraft. The new rules allow people to become certified through a 16-hour course and a test.

Western businesses are using drones for several tasks, such as imaging for precision agriculture -- and say they are poised for significant expansion.

(by Associated Press)