Amazon completes first UK drone delivery
Written by Chris Lemmon
Retail giant Amazon has completed its first commercial drone delivery in the UK, delivering a package in Cambridge as part of its new service, Amazon Prime Air.
Taking place on 7 December, the electrically-powered drone remained below 400ft, delivering the package from the Cambridge fulfilment centre in just 13 minutes. Amazon hopes that all orders using the drone service will be delivered within 30 minutes.
The drones are completely autonomous, operating on their own from take-off to landing. They can carry a container the size of a shoebox, weighing up to 2.3kg.
Amazon Air is currently being privately trialled in the Cambridge area before being launched across further locations in the UK.
Regarding safety, the retailer says on its website: “We are currently permitted to operate during daylight hours when there are low winds and good visibility, but not in rain, snow or icy conditions.”
The continued rise in drone usage has become controversial with a recent UK Airport Board report showing that last month a passenger plane coming in to land at Heathrow almost collided with a drone, which had been spotted from the cockpit window. The risk of drones colliding with commercial flights was “high” according to the report and there have been calls to toughen the laws surrounding drones.