How to Hire a Drone Pilot – 34 North Drones

How to Hire a Drone Pilot – 34 North Drones

How to hire a drone pilot- When hiring a drone pilot that pilot must be certified under Part 107 by the FAA to legally fly a drone for compensation or hire. To get this Part 107 certification, the pilot must pass a written examination administered by the FAA. Thereafter, the drone pilot must take an FAA online course every two (2) years to remain legally current.

The Part 107 certificate standing alone allows the drone pilot to fly legally in prescribed airspace, but other considerations must be made when hiring a drone pilot. The pilot should be able to provide a valid certificate of insurance showing coverage of the pilot for any flights being undertaken on behalf of a customer.

Depending on the type of missions the drone pilot is employed to perform it is important that the drone pilot has the skill and experience necessary to complete the required tasks. Often a drone pilot will have to maneuver the drone quickly and safely around obstacles such as trees, power lines and structures to be at the right place at the right time. As far as photography and videography is concerned, the drone pilot must also possess experience and skill using the onboard drone camera. The FAA does not require these skills at all for a drone pilot to be certified to fly a drone so it is a good idea to inquire about the drone pilot’s experience. Most experienced drone pilots have hundreds to thousands of hours of drone flight time in all types of weather conditions and their pricing typically reflects this experience.

The professional quality of the drones and their cameras used by the drone pilot is likewise important to ensure that the imagery obtained is of a quality nature, well exposed and in focus. Often some ground footage or photos are required to complete the customer’s vision so if the drone pilot also has professional ground camera gear that is a plus.

Operating a drone can be a complex affair when operating around airports, military bases, and infrastructure. Special permission from the FAA, military or controlling authority is often required in certain airspace which can be obtained instantly or within 2-3 weeks depending on the permission sought and the type of airspace to be flown. Some areas may also require commercial film or photography permits which must be obtained in addition to airspace permissions.

Good prior planning allows the drone pilot to make sure he has the proper drone and equipment on hand for the job and can operate the drone safely and within the confines of all laws, regulations, and ordinances.

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