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6 checks to make when hiring a drone operator

Drones are fantastic tools to map large areas, conduct inspections and surveys, generate 3D models and impressive images and film, but they do bring their own risks.

We've therefore put together a short checklist to ensure that you always work with a reputable and safe drone operator…

  1. Ensure they have a valid Civil Aviation Authority Operational Authorisation (OA): although no longer a pre-requisite for commercial work, a valid OA indicates that the pilot has passed a nationally qualified drone training course and understands how to fly safely while complying with drone regulations

  2. Make sure you see evidence of Public Liability insurance and that the cover is high enough for your site/operations

  3. Request a copy of the risk assessment that every drone operator should complete before going on-site (and update following an on-site survey)

  4. Check what permissions and notifications are needed and whether they’ve been granted (Air Traffic Control, landowner, police etc)

  5. Ask how they’ll mitigate any privacy issues (eg using of zoom lens, programmed flight path)

  6. Ensure you - and they - understand what the outputs are going to be used for and how they're going to be generated. e.g. does your building inspection require control points, what format should the point cloud or marketing video footage be?

Do get in touch if you have any questions or would like more information about maximising the use of drones while minimising the risks.


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