Honestly, just about anyone can learn to fly a drone, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. If a company does not understand the FAA’s rules for drone operations, they could find themselves in trouble at a federal level. Drones fly in national airspace that is shared with other aircraft. There are different classes of airspace that exist at different locations and altitudes. FAA authorizations are required to fly in certain airspace, and some locations are prohibited from flights. Temporarily flight restrictions are issued all the time by the FAA which prohibit flight to all aircraft including drones. Even national parks can be off limits to drones. It may be easy to fly a drone, but knowing where you can and can’t fly is a little more difficult, and an important part of drone operations.
Many businesses assume that their general liability policy will cover an employee flying a drone for their business. Once again, insurance for a drone is something that should be thoroughly researched, since drones are considered aircraft. No company would even entertain purchasing an airplane, and allowing an employee to fly it, and assume their general liability policy would cover an accident. While a drone is more affordable to replace than an airplane, there is still the potential liability to consider when using a drone.
Although drones are easy to fly, there is a big difference between someone who knows how to fly it, and someone who knows what they are doing in the air. State and local laws that address privacy and trespassing are just a few of the considerations when flying at low altitudes, not to mention obstacles on the ground. And if something goes wrong with the drone in flight, the pilot better know how to respond.
Professional drone pilots have a certification from the FAA, the proper insurance, and the experience to limit liability because they know what they are doing, and not just how to get the drone in the air. The products and services they offer are the result of their expertise, and experience. There are some real advantages when it comes to using a professional drone pilot, and it may pay bigger dividends to use a pro, instead of doing it yourself. Something to consider when the topic of drones comes up in the work place.