Obviously, not all drone businesses are created equal, and often companies will specialize in different areas of aerial operations. (This is a large factor in price differences and overall professionalism required for specific shoots.) However, there are a few key criteria you will want to know about, and in our latest Ozark Drones video, we cover everything you need to look for before hiring a drone pilot.
The first legal requirement is a FAA drone license to operate commercially, known as a UAS Remote Pilot Certificate. (This is more commonly referred to as a FAA Part 107 License, because of the Part 107 drone law.) Having this license allows a drone pilot to legally provide drone services. Without this license, any drone services used for commercial purpose are illegal under the guidelines of the FAA. However, an FAA Part 107 License does not legally allow flights at all locations. Often an FAA Airspace Authorization is also required.
The next requirement that we highly recommend is Aviation Liability Insurance. Although aviation insurance isn’t required by law, it is a good idea to hire a pilot who has it. That way you are not legally liable in case of a drone accident on your property. (Most businesses specifically ask for drone insurance documentation prior to a shoot, and we recommend you do the same.) It is also worth noting that drone accidents are not covered by traditional business liability insurance, so make sure to ask for Aviation Liability Insurance coverage.
Finally, the last element that is often legally required is an FAA Airspace Authorization. These are legal authorizations from the FAA for your specific flight location. These authorizations are required for any drone flights within a 5-mile radius of an airport. (Including smaller municipal airports and private or military airports.) If a town has a population of 10,000 or more, there is a high probability that an FAA Airspace Authorization may be required.
Hopefully you can use these recommendations the next time you are looking to hire a drone pilot. You can also feel free to contact Ozark Drones via our Contact page if needed.