It may seem like a relatively simple statement.
"Today, looks good for a flight".
If a customer is waiting for drone work to be completed and it's the morning of the scheduled flight, or the drone pilot has turned up unexpected, they may reassure the client, by saying something along the lines of....
"Today, looks good for a flight".
This would be the same of someone who is qualified, and a friend who 'flies drones'.
But there is a huge difference between these statements when spoken by a qualified drone pilot and someone who isn't.
If a qualified drone pilot says 'looks ok' what they actually means is ....
They will have completed a site survey and found a location safe to take off from, within the limits laid down by law.
It means they will know where the closest airfield is and have contact details for the local ATC, they will feel confident to alert them should anything relevant happen.
They will have checked the wind speed and direction and it will be within his or her documented parameters for flying. They know the difference between the windspeed at ground level and the altitude which they'll be flying, and as stated, it's 'ok'.
It means they will have checked whether the airspace they're flying in will be controlled or not and they will have checked to see if there is activity in this region that might cause a disruption to operations.
It means they'll have made an informed decision whether to alert the police or not.
It means they will be aware of geomagnetic activity for the day and again, it will be within the limits set out in their operations manual. They will also know if the levels are likely to cause any problems.
They will have completed a risk assessment and made themselves aware of potential dangers, some of which an unqualified pilot may not even be aware of.
It means they will have sought permissions from those legally entitled to object to the flight and that property and people will be under their control for the flight.
It means they will have checked public rights of way and considered the impact.
It means should the worse happen, then you can rely on their dedicated drone insurance which they will have in place.
It means they have passed a flight test worse than the demands of this flight and that they're confident that they've the skill to complete it, without incident.
It also means that they're confident that they complete the work, as a skilled professional, to a level that you will deem satisfactory or exceptional, and that you'll rate their work publicly at 5 stars, or 10/10!
On the other hand an unqualified pilot, when they say 'looks ok for a flight, most likely means nothing more than looks like it's not going to rain and hopefully I won't crash into something.
There's a vast difference between hiring a qualified pilot and one who isn't. But from some of the work I see online, I'm not sure everyone is aware of what these differences are and it's clear quite a lot of promotional work is completed by unskilled pilots.
Stay safe, and hire an Approved Drone Pilot.
If you're local to North East Wales, then feel free to contact us at Rough Cuts!
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