Robert Zarracina

Robert helps companies determine if using drones will improve their business operations by utilizing his tested APL (Applicability, Profitability, Liability) program to ensure that all decision aspects are covered. His goal is to eliminate the misinformation, market hype, and costly mistakes that can result from being led down the wrong path. He is President of Flight Ventures Ltd and is an FAA-certified pilot, with single, multi-engine instrument and commercial ratings. He has acquired over 2,500 pilot in command flight hours with 30+ years of flying experience including being a skydiver driver. He has an extensive background in sUAV / sUAS business use and flight operations covering FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Certification, previous FAA 333 exemption, daylight (night) operations waiver, and continues to add to his 1,600+ remote pilot in command flight hours. Previously he was hired as the remote pilot in command for Raytheon / BBN’s hostile drone interception program. He has helped establish sUAV flight operation departments for several local clientele, developed and presented numerous introductions to and history of drones, and Beyond Part 107 test preparation courses. He is a member of FAAST (FAA Safety team), possesses a BA and MBA in finance, marketing, computer automation and has taught senior-level marketing and business development classes at local colleges and universities.

Confusion and Bad Assumptions Prevail With VLOS

VLOS, how to lose your mind, reputation, license, and quad all simultaneously. VLOS has been a controversial, complex, and confusing FAA mandate from its inception. Steve, a close friend, asked me if I would be interested in determining the actual limits of VLOS; I curiously accepted. Over five days in varying weather conditions, daytime, civil twilight, and night we flew …

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The Data and Facts About VLOS Flight Distance for UAS

The purpose of this article is to highlight the actual limits of flying small unmanned aerial vehicles (sUAVs), specifically multi-rotors, under the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Visual Line of Sight (VLOS) regulations. This time-consuming research began with a simple question: how far you can see and fly while still meeting the regulations under 14 CFR § 107.31 that defines legal …

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Beyond Visual Line Of Site (BVLOS): There is More to Know

BVLOS has been touted as the “holy grail” of the UAV / drone industry. Those that possess it feel they are thus a cut above the rest. With over 99% of BVLOS waiver applications rejected by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) (only 16% of the 11,345 applications reviewed in 2018 had been approved) and as of June 2020, just 56 …

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Can Public Safety UAS Pilots be Held Personally Liable? More Than We May Know. Part 4

In this last article, I will discuss what we drone pilots face and can do to minimize our liability exposure. See the entire series, here. First let’s start with the FAA’s definition of Pilot In Command (PIC). The PIC is and has the final authority and responsibility for the operation and safety of the flight, has been designated as pilot …

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Can Public Safety UAS Pilots be Held Personally Liable? More Than We May Know. Part 2

During Part 1, I briefly covered the Causby case to help set the stage for situations we drone pilots may confront. Here are two more to consider. The first is Boggs versus Merideth, United States District Court Western District of Kentucky at Louisville, Civil Action N. 3:16-CV-00006-TBR (W.D. Ky. Mar. 21, 2017) Don’t miss future posts in this series. Be …

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How Software Complexity Impacts sUAV Pilots and What Can be Done About It

We unmanned pilots have a lot in common with our manned aircraft brethren sans the luxury of sitting onboard the aircraft. As such, taking advantage of systems that help our piloting capabilities are welcome. Remember forgetting to turn on the GoPro camera of your Phantom 2 only to learn after landing that nothing was recorded? Should I mention the separate …

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