Florida government entities can no longer use DJI as of now (4/23)
A bill that was filed back in 2020 and passed in 2021 is finally going into total effect today, which has law enforcement agencies shelving their DJI drones. Some agencies are even grounding their entire fleet and are upset they have to use inferior and potentially dangerous replacements.
Senate Bill 44 (2021), now section 934.50 of Florida’s statutes, put in place standards and rules for use of drones by government agencies, law enforcement, fire departments, and others. Many of these rules were already in place and included having a system to release images or videos taken by the drone to the public and proper storage of drones. The final part of the bill went into effect today: the use of drones only on the administration’s approved list.
Florida’s approved list of drones:
- Teal Drones
- Vantage Robotics
Florida law enforcement isn’t happy with the changes
It doesn’t sound like many officers in Florida are happy to be forced to ground a handy tool for something that could “put us in danger,” according to Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office Col. Robert Allen. Allen told lawmakers that, in the past year and a half, “we had five failures of the manufacturers on the list. DJI, none.”
DJI’s M300, M30, and Mavic 3 Enterprise drones are the latest in a long line of products tailored toward law enforcement, public safety, and other professional needs. Last year, I spent three days speaking with DJI enterprise users at the company’s Airworks conference. (DJI covered travel costs for me to attend but did not sponsor our coverage or have any say in what we can report.) No matter who I talked to, whether for public safety or agriculture, everyone found DJI drones the best in the industry for these use cases and can be relied on during the most stressful scenarios.