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Margaret

Royal Wedding gatecrasher

By | CAA and Regulation, Drones

With the next Royal Wedding imminent, Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 May, the CAA has posted a Restricted Airspace (Temporary) over the Windsor area for the whole weekend, see http://skywise.caa.co.uk/alert-restricted-airspace-temporary-4/?cat=30.  NATS and Heathrow ATSU will have everything under control from an airline traffic perspective and will be hoping that the normal westerlies will prevail so the noise from any aircraft overhead can be minimised, especially during the marriage service itself.

Manned aviation operatives, being in touch with other ATSUs and possibly Heathrow itself, will be made aware of this restriction before venturing into the area on either of these days.  Commercial drone operators, the good ones at least, will also do their due diligence and realise the RA(T) applies to them and any drone operation as well.  NOTAMs relating drone operations in the Windsor area raised through the NSF procedure already appear on websites, so with the RA(T) in place, NATS is very unlikely to sanction any drone operation in the Windsor near or on these dates.

With the world media and press watching, it will be a momentous occasion but what is the probability that a non-regulated and irresponsible drone owner ‘tries it on’ on the day – just for that exclusive view or footage.  And if that happens will anti-drone technology be applied?  There has to be a big chance it will.

As a drone operator, will you watch the event on TV?  If you do, let’s hope you don’t see something you recognise crashing in on the scene.

John Moreland, Head of Training, DronePartners

North America leads the $20 Billion Drone Market in 2018

By | Drones

A new drone market research report by Research and Markets makes the largest and boldest prediction yet for the drone industry, which the report predicts will exceed $50 billion in the next 7 years.  This report estimates Compound Annual Growth Rate  of 14.15% from 2018 to 2025.  “… increasing use of UAVs in commercial and military applications is one of the most significant factors projected to drive the growth of the UAV market,”North America is expected to  lead the market this year, largely due to increased defence expenditures of the US and Canada and the presence of major UAV manufacturers in North America.  The European and Latin American regions are expected to be the new revenue-generating markets for unmanned aerial vehicles,” says the report.

EASA Opinion 01/18

By | CAA and Regulation

On 6 February 2018 EASA, the European Aviation Safety Agency, posted its Opinion 01/18 in its website,https://www.easa.europa.eu/document-library/opinions/opinion-012018.  At first glance it looks innocuous enough, especially as EASA is charged by the EU with bringing commonality or harmonisation to drone law across the EU.

 

Based on NPA2017-05, EASA wants EU states to implement the ‘Open’ and ‘Specific’ categories under the pretext that the Opinion will:

 

  • “implement an operation-centric, proportionate, risk- and performance-based regulatory framework for all UAS operations conducted in the ‘open’ and ‘specific’ categories;
  • ensure a high and uniform level of safety for UAS operations;
  • foster the development of the UAS market; and
  • contribute to addressing citizens’ concerns regarding security, privacy, data protection, and environmental protection.”

 

This Opinion will go forward to the EU Parliament and is expected to be enshrined in EU law later this year.

 

For the UK CAA, it will be a very interesting time.  Its response to NPA2017-05, seehttp://www.caa.co.uk/uploadedFiles/CAA/Content/Standard_Content/Our_work/Consultations/Responses_to_external_consultations/Files/20170914EASACRTNPA2017-05PartA.pdf, was politically correct but as it challenged almost every EASA precept it could be concluded that the CAA is not at all in favour of the proposals.

 

The Register, see https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/02/26/easa_drone_regs_opinion/, thinks the CAA and the UK Parliament will have to tow the line and incorporate all the Opinion in the proposed 2018 UK Drone Law.  This is like counting your chickens before they hatch.  Let’s see when Opinion 01/18 gets into EU Law, where the UK is with respect to Brexit and what other EU countries decide to do.  As much as EASA tries to dictate across Europe it hasn’t been very successful so far in the drone world.  When dealing with the NAA’s,  it’s worth remembering the First Article of the Rules of the Air:

 

“Every state has complete and exclusive sovereignty over airspace above its territory.”

The CAA may well revert to a Churchillian gesture with respect to EASA.

 

John Moreland, Head of Training, DronePartners

 

Drone Pilot Detained for flying over football match.

By | Uncategorized

A drone pilot has been detained by police after flying a drove over Newport v Spurs FA football match on the 27thJanuary.

The drone was flown over the grounds, in Newport during the first half of the match.  The police then tweeted, “Anyone caught piloting a drone over Rodney Parade during the match…you could be prosecuted, we have already detained one pilot.  Please respect the occasion”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-east-wales-42847749#

 

Lee Bullock, Flight Assessor, DronePartners

Swimmers rescued by drone in Australia

By | Uncategorized
While lifeguards in Australia were being trained how to use drones, they spotted two swimmers off the coast struggling in the waves from the on-board camera.  The drone was equipped with a life buoy that could be dropped from the aircraft.  One of the lifeguards operating the drone managed to manoeuver the aircraft above the swimmers, within 70 seconds, and drop its payload.  Holding onto the inflatable that was dropped the two could swim to shore safely. 
Drones like this can be used for many emergencies from dropping life buoys, fire extinguishers to even medical supplies.  Drones saving lives!  
Lee Bullock, Flight Assessor, DronePartners

Drone Market Sector Report for 2017

By | Drones

Skylogic Research, LLC has published a Drone Market Sector Report for 2017 based on data collected from 2,600 respondents in 60 countries worldwide.  Some interesting statistics including:

  • Nearly 80% of operators only complete between one and five operations per month, and
  • 85% of these operators make less than $50,000 (£45,000) gross per annum

As with all new business ventures in emerging markets there are some that make it and a lot that unfortunately don’t.  This research is nothing new to DronePartners.  It confirms a pattern seen over the last 5 years.  However DronePartners’ experience and knowledge of the market and its dynamics might help you make it.

Links: www.droneanalyst.com, https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/skylogic-research-report-unveils-drone-industry-market-share-figures-300520971.html

John Moreland, Head of Assessment, DronePartners

New powers for police to address illegal and unsafe use of drones

By | Uncategorized

Police are set to be given powers to prevent the unsafe or criminal use of drones as part of a new package of legislation.  This will give officers the right to order operators to ground drones and to seize drone parts to prove it has been used to commit an offence.

New measures will also make it mandatory for drone owners to register and drone operators will be required to use apps – so they can access the information needed to make sure any planned flight can be made safely and legally.

Banning all drones from flying above 400 feet or near airports could also form part of the new regulations.

For more on this story visit Gov UK site