3 Aerial Filming Safety Essentials

Drone filming and photography allows amazing aerial images to be captured. As with any type of flight safety is really important. Professional operators can take a number of steps to make their operation safer. Here's what to check.

Is there an option to fly with dual power supplies?

Drones are powered by battery, a single battery is a single point of failure - its safer to use a drone powered by twin batteries with separate connections to the main control unit. We use in-house, custom built drones. We’ve engineered them from the ground up to utilise dual power feeds for safety.

Can they offer flight platforms with a minimum of six motors.

Flying with six or eight motors will allow a safe landing, even if a motor fails. Hex & Octacopters have a big advantage over Quadcopters here. This flightglobal.com article discusses battery and motor safety in more detail. We fly two custom drones, our lightweight rig has 6 motors and our heavy lifter has 8. These choices give us safety and reliability. Every type of drone has a purpose, for example we use a quadcopter for most of our work over water and indoors; it's a case of having the right options available for each job.

He adds that operators should use UAVs with more rotor blades to provide redundancy, such as a “hexacopter” six-rotor system, rather than a quadcopter that will fall if one of the four rotor blades fails.
— Justin Pringle, industry commentator at Heliguy

 

Ensure the operator conducts regular safety audits.

Every drone operator must keep a detailed operations manual, this should include details of all safety procedures and maintenance schedules. Like any machine drones need routine servicing, fortunately the Bakehouse pilot is a qualified Electronic Engineer!

Check to see if the drone is serviceable or a 'sealed unit'.

An important part of our servicing routine is visual inspection of critical components and connections, consumer drones tend to be sold as sealed units, making such inspection difficult. It helps if one of the team is from a technical background.

Ben O'Leary

Bakehouse Studio Ltd, Hull, HU5 3DT, United Kingdom