FILE- A drone operator helps to retrieve a drone after photographing over Hart Island in New York, April 29, 2018.
FILE- A drone operator helps to retrieve a drone after photographing over Hart Island in New York, April 29, 2018.

The Trump administration plans to ease restrictions on flying drones at night or over crowds.

Under new rules drafted by the Federal Aviation Administration, drone operators would no longer need FAA waivers to operate the small aircraft at night. But they would have to undergo training and install special lights on the drones.

Those who want to fly them over large crowds would also no longer need waivers, but they would have to adjust the weight and speed of the drones so they do not cause severe injuries if they should drop.

"The department is keenly aware that there are legitimate public concerns about drones," Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Monday. She added that the new rules "will be a major step forward in enabling the safe development, testing and deployment of drones in our country."

The rule changes will be open for public comment; it is unclear if or when they would take effect.

Those who want the rule changes say having to obtain waivers stifles the beneficial commercial and industrial uses of drones.

Opponents call it a question of public safety.