Drone Pilot Training and Education
The use of drones is a controversial issue among citizens because of the drone stereotype of being an instrument used by the government for war purposes. This is not always the case, nor is this the usual use of UAVs.
Nonetheless, reports of an estimated 400 crashes of US military drones since 2001 make citizens fearful about the crash hazard drones can be. Even though none of these reported crashes resulted in any fatalities, some of the crashes could have resulted in death if the drones were to have struck individuals nearby; luckily they did not.
The FAA has recently changed its rules about piloting drones that affect mainly professionals. Now to operate a drone for commercial purposes requires the pilot to complete a training course to be legally registered to fly their UAV.
As of right now, hobbyist drone pilots that are flying for fun only and not for money do not have to take any course or undergo any training to pilot their drone, which is also scary.
This is important because one of the main objectives people have for the use of drones is the safety of the general public. Recently, at the Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade, a drone is flown by an inexperienced pilot crashed into bystanders that were trying to watch the festivities.
This is a prime example of why it is important to get proper training to learn how to fully pilot a drone. Piloting drones can be a fun past time for UAV hobbyists, but their rights may be restricted if instances like the one just mentioned becoming a repeat problem.
The drone piloting courses that are mandatory for professionals to take to become legally certified are very thorough, and everyone who operates a drone should consider taking one.
A UAV piloting course is crucial to making the piloting experience as safe as can be. In drone piloting classes, safety is the primary subject covered. Classes will give pilots an edge on how to react in unexpected a situation like as a rapid change in weather or encountering interference in the air.
Pilots who enroll in a proper course will also be instructed on how to manually pilot their UAV so that they are not having to fully rely on the use of autopilot or GPS settings that come standard with most newer model drones.
The majority of the latest drones available for purchase come with a built-in setting that allows the UAV to land at its initial launch point, but this is not 100 percent accurate and at times touching down at the site of the launch is not desirable. If the place where the drone was first launched into the air was vacant at the time but now crowded, that can present quite a problem for someone who doesn’t know how to properly enter descent and land their UAV.
Most classes take three different approaches to ensure that pilots know how to do their job as safely as possible. The classes will begin by having the students complete an internet training portion of the course. This could be seen as the “written exam.”
The next two parts will focus on building skill. The student will be sent a simulator in the mail and must perform well and complete at least the minimum number of hours mandated to move on to the next portion of the drone piloting class. The final step is to attend a drone piloting school in person.
There hopeful professional pilots are challenged to work one on one with an instructor to master flying for real. They will be provided with a drone, taught the controls, and supervised as they log the required hours of training. Once all of the hourly requirements are met, the teacher will evaluate the student’s performance to determine if they are worthy of certification at that time.
The point is that professionals have to know their stuff to be able to fly their drones. The individuals that pass the course should be able to securely operate a drone and not be a high risk to the public or their property.
The other concern that seems to bother people with drones is the issue of privacy. Though this is understandable, the FAA is taking precautions to make sure drones are taking surveillance for the right reasons.
Some police forces and communities are embracing the assistance provided by drones when it comes to keeping residents safe. Lawmakers have been evaluating scenarios where having a drone on patrol could be a real asset.
UAVs can be used to aid in the search of missing people. The moment an Amber alert goes out, drone pilots can start the hunt for the missing child. In a world where police conduct is rapidly under question, having a drone to observe what happens could be helpful in protecting the rights of civilians and clearing police of wrongdoing when applicable.
Drones could potentially help solve crimes. In the case of a crime scene, usually, photographers or investigators come in to take pictures. When a human is in charge of taking photographs, things can get complicated if they are attempting to take pictures of a large, messy scene.
It can be almost impossible for them not to step on or move some objects on site to capture everything on film. This could potentially contaminate or disorganize the evidence. By having a drone to take the pictures, it can fly above the objects and take pictures without disturbing a thing.
UAVs can also provide additional security at large events like the Super Bowl or concerts. As most people are aware tensions can run high when large numbers of people are packed tightly together in a small space. Add alcohol to the mix and things can get out of control.
The drone could work as a deterrent for fighting since no one wants to be caught on tape committing a crime. In the event things do get out of hand, the drone can catch it right away and send an alert to security so they could break up the madness before someone is seriously injured.
The potential for UAVs to advance the safety of the general public is virtually limitless. As issues relating to drones have become a hot topic in court, we are likely to hear more of the advantages of drone surveillance in the months and years to come.