April 18, 2019

TALLAHASSEE — Law enforcement agencies in Florida could use drones for more purposes under legislation passed unanimously by the state House.

Under the measure passed 114-0 on Wednesday, drones could be used to monitor crowds of 50 or more people and for traffic management. Drones could not be used to gather evidence for traffic citations.

Drones could, however, gather evidence at a crime or traffic crash scene. And government agencies could use them to assess damage from natural disasters and to help manage vegetation or wildlife on publicly-owned land or water bodies.

Law enforcement drone use is already allowed for several reasons, including situations where there is imminent danger to the public, countering a terrorist attack and to prevent imminent escape of a crime suspect.

A similar bill is pending in the Senate.