Expert: Poorly trained drone pilots 'going to make mistakes'
Government records reveal problems with our drone program. Federal inspectors found drone pilots -- who make life-and-death decisions -- are not getting the training they need.
Retired Colonel E.J. Otero, who helped plan the war on terror at U.S. Central Command, is not surprised.
"They don't have enough training…they're being stressed," said Otero. "The danger is you're going to have mistakes. They're going to make mistakes."
A GAO report shows that some drone pilots in the Army don't have enough time for continuing drone training because they have to do janitorial work around the base, perform guard duty, and mow grass.
Through a series of interviews, federal investigators revealed a chronic shortage of drone training. And an Army review found most pilots in certain units did not complete fundamental training last year.
The GAO report notes the U.S. Army also does not even know the full extent of their pilots' training. In the U.S. Air Force, around 35 percent of surveyed pilots completed training for all of their required missions.
The GAO is urging the military to beef up training and incentives for drone pilots to stay on the job. And military officials say they plan reforms to address issues raised in the GAO report.