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Drones flying local skies for DEC

Sep 30, 2017 12:10 am
Diane Valden reports in The Columbia Paper that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has a fleet of 22 unmanned aerial vehicles, radio-controlled drones. The drones being used in this area are stationed at the regional headquarters in Rotterdam, in Schenectady County. The are loaned out from there for projects in Columbia, Albany, Delaware, Greene, Montgomery, Otsego, Rensselaer, Schenectady and Schoharie counties. In Columbia County, a DEC drone flew over the Stockport Wildlife Management Area in Stockport and Greenport to evaluate the different types of forest vegetation recently. On April 4, a DEC drone flew over the Hudson River near Catskill, where the barge Meredith ran aground just north of the Catskill Creek with 60,000 barrels of gasoline headed to the Port of Albany. A DEC drone was also used over Hunter Mountain where it found the roof of the fire tower in need of repair. The story says, "Drone use will not be allowed on lands classified as wilderness in the Adirondack and Catskill parks and areas classified as 'primitive' and 'canoe' in the Adirondack Park. The DEC has jurisdiction over public use of drones on DEC administered land and the Federal Aviation Authority has jurisdiction over drones launched from private property. Read the full story in The Columbia Paper.
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