Google’s Wing Drone Deliveries Approved In Oz
After months of trials, the Australian regulators have approved Google parent company’s Alphabet’s Wing drone delivery service in the suburbs of North Canberra.
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has officially approved the venture with stipulations that delivers not be made before 7:00 am Monday — Saturday and 8:00 am on Sundays and public holidays.
Announced in a Medium post, the new drone delivery service will cover around 100 homes in suburbs outside Canberra including Crace, Palmerston, and Franklin.
According to the post, customers will be able to order smaller goods like coffee, groceries and medicine from local businesses such as Captial Chemist, Pure Gelator, Kickstart Espresso, Bakers Delight, Guzman Y Gozmez and more.
Wing says is plans to expand both its serviced locations and the number of businesses it works with “in the coming weeks and months.”
The division has been testing drones here in Australia since 2014 and originally planned to launch a commercial service in 2017, but missed the target.
Popular Mexican food chain Guzman Y Gomez and pharmacy retailer Chemist Warehouse were signed up for advanced trials in October in 2017.
Since then, Wing has delivered over 3,000 packages to homes in communities outside Canberra, Fernleigh Park, Royalla and Bonython.
Now they have been officially approved, Wing’s drones can fly over houses but must avoid major roads such as the Federal Highway, Barton Highway, and Horse Park Drive.
Despite the usual 30-metre rule, Wing is permitted to fly its drones just 5 metres above and 2 metres to the side of people while making deliveries.
In a statement to the Guardian, CASA spokesperson Peter Gibson said the regulator had “carefully assessed” Wing’s previous trials before approving its service in Canberra.
“All those safety issues have been assessed so there are no risks to people on the ground, property or aircraft in the sky.”
Now it has been approved locally, Wing is looking to expand the delivery service with a launch in Helskini, Finland.