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Urban drone flights now legal in Japan: 4 things to know

Companies rush to roll out delivery systems with 'Level-4' ban lifted

Japan has approved "level-4" drone flights, which will allow operators to pilot aircraft over residential areas, even where they have no direct line of sight.

TOKYO -- The Japanese government has eased regulations to allow "level-4" drones flights in which the pilot operates an unmanned aerial vehicle over residential areas without a direct line of sight.

Such flights are expected to take place first with the transport of goods to remote islands and for disaster relief. It will take at least a few years before they can be used to deliver goods around town.

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