There is no denying the buzzing word of "Drones."
Drones have become a sensation over the past year in a commercial and consumer aspect, which has fed some major hype to the media. More well-known retailers such as Best Buy and Cabela's carry popular UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems), but they can also be seen in hobby shops and toy stores. The cost of these systems illustrate a clear difference between a system for an enthusiast and a drone that is fit for commercial use. Some are no larger than a few inches in diameter and have a fixed camera recording to a mini SD card. On the other hand, there are some systems that are a few feet in diameter with the capability of recording stabilized 4K footage; all while wirelessly connected to tablets or smartphones, and transmitting a live HD video feed from the camera with the ability to adjust settings...
The growth in popularity of drones has been incredible to witness. RC multi-rotors are affordable and technologically stable enough for the average consumer to operate. And, let's be honest, who doesn't love that birds eye view?!
With that being said, if you do find yourself receiving a drone this holiday season (or at any point), it is important to know basic guidlines of operating in controlled airspace.
The 3 major no-fly zones are US National Parks, US military bases, and 5 mile radii around airports. Avoid flying over people, stadiums, and sporting events.
"When you fly your drone anywhere in the nation’s airspace, you automatically become part of the U.S. aviation system. Under the law, your drone is an aircraft. So while the rules for drones may be different, you have the responsibility to operate safely, just as a Cessna or 747 pilot does."
Quote from "FAA: Fly Safe With Your Drone" article.
Recently the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) released a pre-flight checklist alongside their "I Fly Safe" campaign. CLICK HERE for the official "I Fly Safe," Pre-flight Checklist print-out.
- It is mandatory to avoid manned aircraft
- Fly below 400 feet. Always fly in visual line of sight (VLOS)
- Stay a minimum of 5 miles away from airports
- If you notice an accident or fire, leave the airspace clear for emergency assistance.
- Don't drink and drone!
As a safe pilot practice, it is important take the time to educate yourself on any temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) within your area. An assigned FAA Task Force is currently working on detailed drone registration recommendations, so it is also recommended to stay informed of this process through the FAA website.
For more information, click on the FAA and Know Before You Fly website links below. Check back with us for future posts on tips, information on drone safety, and details on drone registration!
Remember to "Fly Safe, Fly Smart, and Have Fun!"
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