FutureFive NZ - Drone insurance more common as Kiwis take flight

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Drone insurance more common as Kiwis take flight

10 years ago the idea of affordable personal drones for consumers would have been a very foreign concept. Drone numbers in New Zealand are rapidly increasing, so expect to see more people take out drone insurance as the risk of drone accidents rises.

Earlier this year, Delta Insurance introduced the most comprehensive drone operator’s insurance in New Zealand. The plan was a result of the extremely high value of commercial drone technology, at over $127 billion globally and growing.

“Insurance premium start at $500 and goes up from there depending on the value and nature of the drone, what it is being used for and the experience and capability of the drone pilot,” says Craig Kirk, GM of Delta Insurance.

“Insurance will cover the policyholder for a range of things including damage to the drone in flight, on the ground or in transit; liability to third parties for damage caused by the drone; and cover for prosecutions under certain statutes including privacy legislation, health and safety legislation and the civil aviation legislation.”

Kirk recalls a report describing a situation in which a personal drone was shot down with a shotgun. The shooter allegedly took issue with the drone being flown over their property

“We cover commercial drone operators who have an understanding of civil aviation regulations. It can be big business as we are aware of some commercial grade drones being valued in excess of $250,000,” says Kirk

New Zealand is supported by regulatory environments that promote and enable the appropriate testing and practical commercial use of drones

As it stands, drones do not need to be registered for use in New Zealand. This means that no accurate data on the number of drones in the country exists, with the only knowledge being that the number is in the thousands

Drone technology spending is expected to double to $91 billion over the course of the next 10 years, so it’s likely that the number of drones in New Zealand will see a large uptick

Due to the lax regulatory restrictions in New Zealand, we will be one of the first countries to experiment with drone deliveries, with Domino’s Pizza publicising the trialling of drone pizza delivery.

There are currently several sectors in New Zealand which employ the use of drones, including sporting, real estate, agriculture, waterways and surveying.

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