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Study: Arizona ranks in the top five when it comes to drone flying

When it comes to drones, Arizona has the fifth-most approved applications for drone operations according to a new study.

A report in the Phoenix Business Journal by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International found that Arizona was the state with the fifth-most drone applications (17) approved by the Federal Aviation Administration since 2014.

California had the most with 70, followed by Texas (46), Florida (40) and Illinois (18).

Arizona also ranked ahead of larger population states such as New York (11), New Jersey (11), Washington State (12), Pennsylvania, (15), Georgia (8), Massachusetts (8), and Ohio (14) in terms of applications.

According to the report, seven of the approved unmanned aerial vehicle applications were for real estate.

Nationally, 153 of the FAA’s 500 approved drone applications are for real estate which accounts for 31 percent according to the study. Aerial surveying is responsible for 26 percent of drones followed by 25 percent for photography and 21 percent for agriculture.

The military operates drones out of Fort Huachuca in Sierra Vista and includes some UAV pilot training. Drones have been used along the Mexican border.

The U.S. Military has used drones extensively the past two administrations to target enemy combatants in countries such as Pakistan, Afghanistan and Yemen in an effort to take out some Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders.

Defense contractors have also conducted drone operations in the state because of the army base near Sierra Vista and the state’s ample days of flying weather.

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