Public Perceptions: Drones survey results from 2019 – Institute of Mechanical Engineers

Drones are becoming an increasingly familiar sight in the UK.

They play a growing role in commercial activities as well supporting services such as speeding up the delivery of urgent medical supplies or carrying out inspections on North Sea oil and gas platforms.

They are capable of going into hostile or inaccessible environments for search and rescue or research. Drones have been widely used to relay scientific data and for photography, for academic research as well as for other uses such as gathering content for the media.

To deliver on the huge promise of drones, much will depend on building consumer confidence both in how the unmanned aircraft are used and also the regulations governing their operation.

Recommendations

  • The drone-using community, companies and the Government need to work together to develop a public awareness campaign to increase the understanding of drone regulation and oversight. In order for the public to trust drones, it is essential people understand them and know about their advantages and limits. The public need to be more aware of the existing rules in place that govern them and who oversees the implementation of these rules
  • The Government should consult on new regulations on drone deliveries, in particular addressing the concerns about the wider community impact of deliveries to people’s homes. There are specific concerns around preventing accidents in the sky, having too many drones flying in a neighbourhood and the potential impact on personal privacy.

Related links

Download a copy of the report here.