FAA Chief: Drone Registration Soars Past That of Regular Planes

The Federal Aviation Administration says there are now more registered drones in the U.S. than there are registered piloted aircraft.

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told a legal forum on Monday that the agency passed the milestone last week when it topped 325,000 registered drone owners. The number of small unmanned aircraft is even larger because drone operators often own more than one drone, he said.

There are 320,000 registered manned aircraft, including private planes and airliners, according to the FAA.

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FAA officials launched a registration program for drones just before the end of 2015, saying it would help them track down operators who violate regulations and also help to create a culture of accountability.

Huerta said the speed with which registration has taken off is proof that government and industry can work together.

Related: Why FAA Registration Might Not Make Drones Much Safer