These FAQs are to help you when you are looking to hire a Drone Operator or Flyer or you are looking to get in to drone flying your self.
Q. Who is Airborne Images?
A. Hi there. I am Barry Mitchell, founder and owner of Airborne Images. I have been providing digital marketing services to companies across the UK and Europe for over 20 years with my main company Barry's Web Design. I provide digital marketing, website design, commercial photography and print media. I have been providing commercial photography services for around 15 years. I have always been an enthusiast for modern technology and so providing drone services was a natural next step for my business offerings.
I first started flying drones around 6 years ago when I purchased the DJI Phantom 3. I used this to learn the technology and how to fly a drone. This was not done in any commercial capacity as I never used any footage or images for websites or any marketing materials. In 2021 I decided I had enough experience flying the drone to get certified for commercial works and so started Airborne Images - at this time I gained the CAA Certificates needed to provide commercial drone services. I also upgraded to DJI's latest Mavic Drone which as of 2021 is considered one of the best drones on the market under 2.5kg. The drone shoots high quality photos at 48 megapixels and video up to 8k! My main area of interest for commercial drone services is aerial video and photo for marketing and surveys. I currently provide aerial video and photo services across central Scotland and Tayside.
Q. Do you need a Certificate/Licence to fly a drone in a built up area or near people?
A. YES - in the UK it is a legal requirement to be certified to at level CofC A2 to fly a drone for any purpose in a congested area OR within 150 meters of any built up area. This means if you are flying a drone for pleasure, or if you are flying a drone for any purpose such as an inspection, or for shooting an aerial video at a party or event, the flyer must be approved by the CAA and insured.
Q. I want to fly my drone as a hobby. I don't intend to do it commercially. Do I still need certification?
A. To fly a drone of up to 2kg within 150 meters of people and in a built up area, you will need the CofC A2 certificate even if you only intend to fly as a hobby. Please see the CAA open Category regulations for exact details of what you can and can not do. Most importantly, to get started flying a drone of any kind or size, you must pass the CAA online test and hold a Flyer-ID, and you must register as a UAS operator, and display your Operator ID on your UAS.
Q. What if I hire a drone pilot for commercial flights who is not CAA approved to at least CofC A2?
A. You and they are breaking the law and can be prosecuted. Police Scotland and the CAA are actively looking to prevent illegal drone activity. Employing an un-certified drone pilot is illegal and you are responsible for it.
Q. Do I or any pilot/operating company I hire need insurance?
A. Yes - to fly any drone commercially the pilot (be it you or someone you have hired) will need to be fully insured for public liability. When hiring anyone to fly a drone for you, you should ask for CAA Certification and to see the insurance held. It is also recommended to ask for a risk assessment prior to any flight.
Q. Can I check the pilots credentials?
A. Yes you should check your pilots credentials before any flight. This includes CAA certification and any insurance cover that they have.
Q. I live next to the airport or a restricted flight zone. Can I get a drone survey?
A. Your pilot should discuss this prior to any flight bookings. They will have to contact the Air Traffic Control and the local Police to gain approval prior to any flight. Normally flights are not permitted within 5 km of any airport or aerodrome so strict permission must be given prior to any flight and all checks must be made. There are also flight restricted areas across the UK eg: military basses, nature reserves. This should be discussed with you during any pre flight and planning consultations.
Q. Do you take photos and videos?
A. When you hire me to do any drone work, we can offer you high resolution photos up to 48mp and ultra high quality video up to 8k.
Q. What can I do with the photos?
A. You may use the photos for any purpose but we do retain the copyright on any photos or videos delivered to you. If you would like to use the media for commercial purposes we can grant you a licence. This is priced as per your requirements.
Q. I would like some photos/video of my wedding or a similar event. Can I give them to friends and family?
A. Yes. You can distribute the photos and video to any friends and family as long as they are not used for any commercial purposes.
Q. I accidentally deleted the files you gave me! Do you have a backup and can I have a copy?
A. We do back up all of the videos and photos we take but these are only retained for 1 year. You can have copies in that time frame. If the time is longer than this, we may not have a copy for you.
Q. How do I receive the images or videos?
A. We can email photos to you or if the files are large, we will upload them to our web space and send you a link to a zip file. Files can also be delivered to you on DVD or on a USB stick.