There's nothing quite like a day of ice fishing to get away from it all. Just you, some friends, a couple of beers, and ... a beer delivery drone.
At least, that was the hope for Lakemaid Beer, a Minnesota brewery considering using drones to deliver frosty ones to anglers out on the lake. After the FAA caught wind of the operation, however, Lakemaid's top-down approach to help drinkers go bottoms-up has been grounded.
"As much as [the FAA] thought it was a funny idea, it was a violation of all sorts of codes," Jack Supple, Lakemaid Beer Company President, told ABC News. "I understand why they had to shut it down, but I would like to do it for our fishermen."
The company released a YouTube video last week demonstrating what a beer delivery drone service would look like, complete with an input of map coordinates to locate an ice fisher's hut out on the vast frozen lake.
Supple told NPR their beer delivery drone never flew more than 400 feet above the ground, and they believed it would therefore fall under less-strict regulations as a model aircraft, though he was mistaken. In 2007, the FAA specifically excluded model aircraft used for business purposes from the 400-foot rule.
The brewers "figured a vast frozen lake was a lot safer place than [what] Amazon was showing on 60 Minutes," added Supple, referring to the online retail giant's own forays into drone delivery services.
According to a release from Lakemaid, the FAA isn't expected to issue a formal set of regulations for commercial drone use until 2015, meaning we'll all have to wait for our suds from above.
WATCH Lakemaid's original beer delivery drone promo, below: