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12° Nicosia,
22 July, 2024
 

Packages in under an hour delivered by drone to start in the UK

Amazon's Prime Air expansion promises quicker, greener deliveries with new MK30 drone

Source: Daily Mail

Amazon will start delivering packages by drone in just under an hour around the UK next year.

The technology giant said the service would begin from one of its UK same-day delivery sites but is keeping the location secret for now. It is set to be revealed at the end of 2024.

The rollout is part of an expansion of drone deliveries, which will also see it be introduced in Italy and expanded to a third state in the US, with drone deliveries already operating in California and Texas.

Amazon previously ran a short trial of an earlier version of the Prime Air drone delivery system in Cambridgeshire in 2016.

'As part of our continued efforts to innovate for customers, we are excited to announce the expansion of Prime Air delivery internationally, for the first time outside the US,' the company said in a statement.

'We have been delivering packages by drone for almost a year in California and in Texas.

'We have built a safe, reliable delivery service and have partnered very closely with regulators and communities.

'We will continue with that collaboration into the future to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers and the communities we serve.'

Amazon drone deliveries are already in action in Lockeford, California.

Customer Jeff Rhodes uses Prime Air nearly every week to order products such as toothpaste, mouthwash and bike locks.

'It's fun. I never thought I'd see a parcel delivered in my backyard,' he told the BBC.

'When you order we see it within 20 or 30 minutes so obviously quicker than having to run to the store and get this stuff.'

The US tech giant said it had been working with the UK Government and aviation authorities on the introduction of the technology to UK airspace.

The announcement came alongside the unveiling of the company's latest drone for deliveries - the MK30 - which Amazon says can fly twice as far as previous Prime Air models, is quieter, and able to fly in more diverse weather conditions.

Aviation minister Baroness Vere said: 'Amazon's announcement today is a fantastic example of Government and industry coming together to achieve our shared vision for commercial drones to be commonplace in the UK by 2030.

'Not only will this help boost the economy, offering consumers even more choice while helping keep the environment clean with zero emission technology, but it will also build our understanding of how to best use the new technology safely and securely.'

Frederic Laugere, head of innovation advisory services at the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), said: 'Exploring the options of how drones can be safely and successfully incorporated into more of the UK's airspace is key.

'It is vital that projects such as this take place to feed into the overall knowledge and experiences that will soon enable drones to be operating beyond the line of sight of their pilot on a day-to-day basis, while also still allowing safe and equitable use of the air by other users.'

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