The commercial use of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles is going to literally take off. The US FAA has allocated over $60 Billion to modernize the country’s air traffic control systems and expand airspace to accommodate the commercial use of these aircraft. Congress has mandated the FAA to come up with regulations in 2015. From Amazon and Google to Dominos Pizza, the interest in this technology is huge (decrease delivery speed and decrease costs: how do you compete with that?). In fact, it is estimated that drones will produce approximately $90 Billion in economic activity between 2015 and 2025, creating about 100,000 jobs. To expedite the process of commercial introduction of these vehicles and shape the commercial regulatory environment, Amazon, Google and others formed a UAV coalition to lobby Washington.
The insurance industry is likely to be a user of such technology – both for claims adjusting and underwriting of certain risks. In fact, USAA, one of the largest insurance companies in the US, petitioned the FAA on October 2nd for permission to use drone aircraft as a way to speed up claim processing. In addition, insurance coverage of drones represents another revenue source for insurers.