NEW DELHI: Drones, or unmanned aircrafts, are becoming increasingly popular and it is mandatory to buy third-party liability insurance in India for drones flown on a private as well as commercial basis.
While policies have been rolled out by private insurers for commercial owners, there is no defined product for the most talked about concept in the industry — Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS).
In an industry-first initiative, state-run general insurer National Insurance has launched BVLOS insurance coverage, which has been exclusively designed for the consortiums selected by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to conduct 100 hours of BVLOS test flights in a pre-defined airspace.
The insurance has been issued to Asteria Aerospace, a manufacturer and operator of unmanned aerial vehicles through Itus Insurance Brokers utilizing deep-tech start-up TropoGo Platform.
The insurance coverage will safeguard the risk of any loss or damage to a third-party due to any accident during the test flights.
Besides Asteria, the company said it will also be providing similar coverage to the DunzoAir consortium.“We have been seeing increasing drone adoption in the last few months, be it Covid-19 control, Amphan disaster management or locusts control.
We also see BVLOS operations to further accelerate the innovation especially for medicine delivery and in agriculture in the coming years,” Shubhankar Pain, chief regional manager of National Insurance, said.
So far, DGCA has approved 20 drone consortia including Asteria Aerospace for conducting BVLOS Drone trials in a sandboxed environment.