The best things in life do come with both freedom and responsibility, and that includes owning a drone. You are free to purchase, own and fly your drone, but as a responsible owner/operator, there are are essential things you need to know and abide by, if you have just bought yourself a new drone.
As in any product you buy, you have to familiarize yourself with your new drone to know how it should be operated, to avoid mishandling and breaking it before you can even fly it off the ground.
Some important information to be found in the user/owner’s manual or guide are:
– Safety instructions; instructions for use, maintenance instructions, product technical specification, warranty, among other important information.
Drone makers now make their user guides/manuals online, so you can go check one pertaining your drone.
An example of a drone user manual is provided online by DJI for its DJI Phantom 3.
Here too is their site for their tutorial videos.
Aside from this, however, there are 7 top tips you ought to know and do before you attempt to fly your newly-bought drone.
Register your drone(s) – it’s a MUST
All drones weighing more than 0.55 pounds (250 grams) and less than 55 pounds (approx. 25 kilograms) including payloads such as on-board cameras. […] Registration is a statutory requirement that applies to all aircraft. Under this rule, any owner of a small UAS who has previously operated an unmanned aircraft exclusively as a model aircraft prior to December 21, 2015, must register no later than February 19, 2016. Owners of any other UAS purchased for use as a model aircraft after December 21, 2015 must register before the first flight outdoors. Owners may use either the paper-based process or the new streamlined, web-based system. Owners using the new streamlined web-based system must be at least 13 years old to register. Check out this site for more information on how to register your drone.
Know the rules
Before flying your newly-bought drone, be clear as to your purpose – whether it’s for fun or for work – and learn as much about the rules and regulations governing your use of the drone.
Remember, the rules for operating an unmanned aircraft depend on why you want to fly, the FAA says.
Rules Covering Drones for Fun
– Pilot Requirements: None
– Aircraft Requirements: Must be registered if over 0.55 lbs
– Location Requirements: 5 miles from airports without prior notification to airport and air traffic control
– Operational Rules, among others:
Must ALWAYS yield right of way to manned aircraft
Must keep the aircraft in sight (visual line-of-sight)
– See more here:
Rules Covering Drones for Work/Commercial Use
However, based on the FAA’s final rules covering operations of small drones, drone use for aerial photography services , no longer have pilot requirements and can be operated in class G airspace without restriction. Drone use for commercial purposes is now possible without a pilot’s license. This is huge for many industries. – See more here:
According to the press release announcing thefinal rules which cover routine commercial use of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or “drones”), these new regulations work to harness new innovations safely, to spur job growth, advance critical scientific research and save lives.
See Operational Rules for drones for work:
Effective date of these final rules is August 29, 2016.
In case of conflict, what to do?
When you run into a situational crisis involving your drone, such as an anti-drone shooter – keep your heads about, and call the authorities, PC Mag advises in an article.
Some folks are under the impression that a drone flying 100 feet in the air is spying on them—show them just how wide-angle the video is from that altitude. Of course, not everyone you meet is reasonable. In those cases, you should be aware of where you’re standing. As with photography, it has a lot to do with your rights to fly. – Read more:
Sign up for a drone flying training program
Getting trained by professional drone flying experts will benefit you in the long run. A proper drone flying training can help you develop and strengthen your flying skills, and boost your confidence.
Besides, as a previous article by The Droneologist says, drone flying training schools, like the UVU, not only equip interested drone flyers with proper drone operation techniques and skills, but also offer academic programs that lead to a degree.
Who knows your new-found hobby may lead you to a great career change?
Get the best drone apps for you
For starters, here are 2 useful drone apps you should try.
B4UFLY – this is a smartphone app the release of which was announced by the FAA last year. B4UFLY is good for recreational drone operators, but not intended for governmental operators of drones.
B4UFLY will inform an app user about restrictions in the user’s area, upcoming requirements from the FAA, and other information important for a hobbyist user to know before flying a drone. – Read more:
3DR Solo – is a great app for any aerial photographer. It is a streamlined and one-touch mobile interface that controls your copter and your camera. By offering users the ability to control their GoPro camera with precision and ease, the fully-integrated Solo app allows for complete control over your camera while it is already flying high. – Read more here:
Learn from the experts and bond with fellow drone enthusiasts
Join a drone community or meet-up groups near your area. It’s a great and fun way to learn more from the experience of others. At the same time, you can bond with like-minded individuals, talk shop and exchange notes. What more, you can join exciting events and more training activities. One of the country’s most popular meet-up groups is the Drone User Group Network – a community that promotes the use of civilian drones for the good of humanity.
The NYC/NJ DUG™ is a chapter member. These groups are for both amateur and professional drone enthusiasts, so you know you are in good, pleasant company.
Lastly, always update yourself by reading on current drone trends, technologies and government regulations. As you get more involved with your new drone, let your knowledge grow as well.
With these top tips, you can enjoy flying your drone well and in a safe, responsible, confident manner knowing too that you are in compliance with government rules and regulations. Happy take-off!
Read also: What Drone Flyers Ought to Know
See frequently asked questions about unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).
Check out the amazing items below if you are interested in purchasing a drone :