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Colorado Public Safety Unmanned Aircraft Systems Association Starts

A new group has started in Colorado. The Colorado Public Safety Unmanned Aircraft Systems Association can be found online at www.cpsuas.org. Founder David Spraggs said, “Over the last 18-months I’ve spoken to so many agencies from Colorado and around the Country. I really saw a need for a new professional organization to bring together Colorado public safety agencies – whether ... Read More »

The Role of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) in the Fire Service and EMS and What it Takes to be a Good Pilot

The age of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), or drones as some people call them, is upon us. While both Amazon and Google have announced plans to use these unmanned vehicles for commercial delivery services, there some dramatic and incredibly beneficial uses of these unmanned aircraft in public safety fields outside of law enforcement. I happen to ... Read More »

Hey UAS Public Safety Pilots – Time to Get Recurrent

The FAA has sent out this notice to UAS Part 107 pilots. Important information for COA pilots is below the Part 107 update. The first Remote Pilot certificates were issued in August 2016 and are nearing the end of their 24 calendar month currency. Remote drone pilots must complete a recurrent training course or pass a recurrent knowledge test within ... Read More »

Think About Doing a Control Tower Tour to Open Your Eyes

Yesterday I brought along five students for a VIP private tour of the Air Traffic Control center and tower at Raleigh-Durham International Airport. It is extremely helpful for those drone pilots who have not had any or much exposure to the airspace issues faced by controllers, to do a tour like this. We started in the dark radar room and ... Read More »

Fireworks Flight Debrief

WFFD Firebird 1 Flight Debrief Date: 7-3-2018 Flight Time: 1 hour Mission Goals: Assist fire command and law enforcement in any way possible with actionable information during large public Town event. What Went Well: The following items were conducted without incident: An excellent landing zone was identified, secured, and used for the event. Video footage was obtained for use by ... Read More »

UAS Structure Fire Flight Debrief

WFFD Firebird 1 Flight Debrief Flight Time: 1 hour Mission Goals: Assist command and firefighters in any way possible with actionable information. What Went Well: The following items were conducted without incident: Although the incident location was off limits by the time I arrived due to the water supply was running down the road, a safe landing zone (LZ) was ... Read More »

NASA Flies Large Unmanned Aircraft in Public Airspace Without Chase Plane for First Time

NASA’s remotely-piloted Ikhana aircraft, based at the agency’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California, successfully flew its first mission in the National Airspace System without a safety chase aircraft on Tuesday. This historic flight moves the United States one step closer to normalizing unmanned aircraft operations in the airspace used by commercial and private pilots. Flying these large remotely-piloted ... Read More »

FAA to Allow Flight Over People and Beyond Line of Sight in 2020 or 2021

The Government Accounting Office has released a report on Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems that contains some interesting information about approval for UAS flight over people and beyond line of sight. The report says the, “FAA is developing standards designed to routinely and safely allow small UAS operations over people who are not directly involved in the operation of the aircraft ... Read More »

Why You Should Always Be Ready to Say No to Flying Your Public Safety Drone

New public safety drone pilots face a severe problem in their early flight years. They lack the experience and confidence to say “no” to flying. As a UAS pilot, we can never forget FAR 91.3 that says “The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft.” ... Read More »