Unmanned aircraft rules

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(AP) – A trade group for drone aircraft manufacturers and operators is releasing the industry’s first “code of conduct,” partly in response to growing privacy concerns as the industry expands into civilian aviation.

The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International said Monday that the recommendations for “safe, non-intrusive operation” are meant to guide operators and reassure the public. Citizens, civil liberties groups and politicians have voiced worries that the small aircraft, which can easily be outfitted with cameras, raise the specter of a “surveillance society.”

The industry’s new recommendations pledge to “respect the privacy of individuals.”

The Federal Aviation Administration is devising new rules for unmanned aircraft, but the technology is available now.

The nonprofit industry association has been in existence for 40 years and has members in more than 60 countries.

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