Should drones be ‘left to professionals’?

Initial, informal training could help to pave the way for a safer drone sector

UAVAir, the UK’s leading CAA approved drone training academy, is tackling the question that is on everyone’s minds – should drones be left to the professionals? 

As the drone industry reaches a regulatory ‘tipping point’, with proposals of stricter safety rules and tests for all drone owners, many are left wondering what the future might hold for the industry.

While many support the drone sector, a recent Tech Radar article titled ‘The End of Drones Can’t Come Soon Enough’ echoed a view that is shared by a wide segment of the public. While it noted the positives of the professional industry, it branded the amateur user base as ‘idiots’, implying that hobbyist drone operators should be deterred from embarking on their past time, to a sometimes dangerous effect. 

UAVAir notes that smarter regulations could help to end the growing number of drone related incidents that happen due to irresponsible drone use. However, discouraging new users from getting to grips with the technology in those early days would only pose a challenge to the sector, not a solution.

John Gore, UK Operations manager at UAVAir, explained: “While the words used by John McCann in the Tech Rader article may be somewhat sensationalised to make a good read, I think he does mirror the thoughts of many and it’s something that needs addressing. It’s great to see that he acknowledges the many benefits that drones can bring, noting their use in filmmaking or the emergency services, but in order for these great things to happen we need to encourage new pilots, not push them away.

"If we forbid amateurs from flying a drone at all, many talented pilots may be left undiscovered. In a similar way to how we have driving lessons and tests, we need to adopt a similar ‘starting point’ for drones, making entering the world of drones accessible but safe.”

Alongside its CAA and OfQual approved Unmanned Aircraft Qualification (UAQ) course, UAVAir also offers drone pilot lessons for candidates wanting to refine their flying techniques.
Teaching the basics of safe, responsible flight, its team of instructors use their extensive experience to enlist all new pilots with confidence. 
While the course has been designed to offer extra support to its customers prior to enrolling on its UAQ course, such initial, informal training could help to pave the way for a safer drone sector.

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