Developing a Plan for Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Traffic Operations Applications in Virginia

Currently, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is using unmanned aerial systems (UASs) in a variety of applications that support the construction, maintenance, and operation of Virginia's highway system. VDOT would like to expand the use of UASs in traffic operations but significant technical, regulatory, and operational issues must first be addressed. A list of potential UAS applications related to operations will be developed and their viability for near-term deployment in Virginia will be evaluated. In addition, several pilot demonstrations of those applications that are considered to be most relevant to VDOT's needs - without duplicating existing work - will be conducted. Finally, a plan for how to integrate the most promising UAS applications within VDOT operations will be developed.