Is one drone operator as good as another?
The simple answer to this question is NO!
There are two ways a drone operator can work legally but both are very different. The best way is to use a drone operator that has had their licence (UOC) issued by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). This means that the operator has undertaken a very comprehensive and difficult flight test and has been tested on their aeronautical knowledge relating to flight safety. This is a very similar process to a manned aircraft pilot assessment.
The other method is for an operator who has no license at all. This type of drone operator has not undergone any rigorous testing from CASA. The Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s testing is very in-depth and many fail the CASA requirements. Assuring a drone operator is operating under a CASA UOC ensures you are dealing with a professional drone company, such as Perth Drone Services. It is unlikely these types of drone operators have the appropriate insurance in place too, as all insurance companies who insure drones for public liability, require a UOC number.
Are there any rules for drones?
Of course there are, and for good reason. There are many rules that we have to operate within. There are regulations put in place by the Civil Aviation Authority (CASA in Australia) and our own company methods and procedures to insure a safe operation. These normally are not restrictive for normal operations.
Do you have to be licensed to operate a drone?
Yes. To operate a drone commercially for gain or profit the operator must be licensed and registered with CASA. If an operator is NOT licensed, then they would not be allowed to obtain any of the required insurances and charge for their drone services.
What happens if a licensed drone operator works illegally?
A drone operator that undertakes any aerial drone work that is considered to be of an illegal nature could be fined and have large penalties imposed on them by CASA. This often happen when drone-cowboys upload their dangerous stunts on YouTube, which is actually evidence of their rule breaking. In addition to this, the operation would NOT be covered by insurance if anything is to go wrong.
How much does it cost to employ Perth Drone Services?
The cost for our service is dependent on a lot of the different factors. We generally don’t take on small jobs or simple photography work as our services are targeted mostly for complicated drone orthomosaic imagery, thermal imagery applications, linear architecture asset inspection, drone time-lapse video documentaries and environmental 3-D rendering work. Our prices will vary, as such we operate on a quote by quote basis. We are able to provide a free Scope Of Work and Proposal given the opportunity. Be rest assured; we have a range of options for drone work that will suit all budgets.
Are there any areas that you can’t operate within?
Most areas of work are possible with a drone. However certain locations require further permissions to be gained from CASA. We thoroughly research every mission before we arrive onsite. We ensure we have appropriate permissions by relevant agencies before we launch onsite.
Can drones fly and operate at night?
Generally speaking NO. Drones are only permitted to fly 30min after sunrise and 30min before sunset. However, we can obtain a CASA exemption that allows us to operate 24 hours a day and can undertake night work when necessary.
What height, range and speed can you fly at?
We are required to operate within the CASA regulations. This means we can fly up to high 120m and within Line Of Sight from our chief pilot. Depending on the weather conditions and the time of day, it can be possible to stay within line of sight for approximately 1km in rural locations and usually up to 600m in urban areas. Depending on the weather conditions, we can fly at speeds up to 80kph.
Can you operate higher than 120m (400 feet)?
Additional approval is required to operate above 120m but this approval from CASA can take around six weeks. There are also additional CASA costs involved.
Can you operate near helicopter landing sites & airports?
Generally operators can NOT work within 5.5km from these locations, but for an additional fee and around six weeks lead-time, we can apply to CASA for a one off permission.
What weather can we fly in?
We can operate in lots of different weather, the aircraft is capable of flying in wind speeds of 45kph although when operating within a site with many obstacles such as trees this may not be possible. We cannot yet fly in rain which tends not to be very restrictive, especially due to the great weather of Western Australia.
We understand that weather is changeable and are flexible regarding this. We will keep a close watch on weather patterns and forecasts and will keep you updated in the days approaching your booking.
How Safe are drones?
Our Drones are very safe. Our pilots are professionals that always consider safety first. Before and after every flight the aircraft are checked thoroughly and required maintenance is carried out. We comprehensively assess risks and are very open about any concerns before we operate.
Do you hire out equipment to third parties?
No. Each pilot needs to be certified and licensed by the relevant authority (CASA). Any job which is required is flown by our Perth Drone Services Chief Pilot.
Do you travel outside of Australia?
Yes. It is worth noting that depending on the country of intended operation different restrictions or legislation may apply. In this case, we research and gain all necessary permissions before arriving onsite.
How long can you fly for?
Our systems can fly for 22 minutes on a single battery. After this, the aircraft needs to land and the battery replaced. This is very quick and we carry at least four fully-charged batteries to every job for all day filming if required. As we are flying, we have the ability to charge two batteries in preparation.
Do you require on-site power?
No. Our fully-equipped van has a full 240v power supply system for operating all of our 240v equipment and recharging of batteries as we drive from site to site.
Are you fully insured?
Yes. We have full aviation insurance that covers all of our drones and $10m public liability insurance.
Can I reschedule due due to poor weather?
Yes. Providing we are free on the new revised date rescheduling is permitted.
How do I book or make further enquiries?
Simply give us a call on 1300 76 55 66. We can visit you in person to gain access to the site for a free evaluation or you are welcome to email us schematics or Scope Of Works for us to put together a proposal for you.