For those unclear about the FAA Section 333 Exemption Process, Adam from Aeroworks Productions, LLC. answers some of the common questions and provides additional information about operating as a commercial operator.
Thanks, something is clearer, but next to it FAA till lives in the PAST!
Thanks for sharing, Adam. Lots of great advice in here. It's always encouraging to see a high standard of professionalism among commercial UAS operators.
Quick question: As far as the FAA is concerned, does "commercial" mean that money changes hands? What if you're flying for a public safety use but don't get paid? Does that fall under the hobby category or the commercial category?
Nikola, That would require a Public COA usually issued to Law enforcement and Fire Departments, as well as educational entities. This type of work still requires the appropriate documentation.
Thanks for taking the time to put this together. I found it interesting and helpful.
Very well done sir!
I fully expected this thread to get bombed by the Breitbartian trolls, but your informative and accurately-sourced video kept them at bay. Kudos.
Appreciate the kind words Tony. It's not a perfect system by any means but we're making the best of it until it is.
WOW, I had no idea the level of bureaucracy that already exists.So what do those Hollywood film companies do when using drones for films? They all have pilots licenses? Is there some sort of pilots union conspiracy here? The films are definitely for profit, so it's an indirect 'commercial' use of a drone. I just went to a concert where a drone filmed the event and hovered over the crowd, and nobody complained. Do concert venues require a licensed pilot to film their events? And how about those 'rock stars' that have drones in their shows? Is this a commercial use? They are making money with the concert, so is the use of a drone in a for-profit event a 'commercial use'? So if I fly my drone at such an event with permission from the venue, but do not collect money, what is the difference? How is it 'more safe' not to collect money? The entire idea is foolish and makes no sense. The safety of the flying and the regulations have nothing to do with whether or not money is changing hands. I can fly an airplane for fun, and still crash it and kill someone.
Commercial use of drones isn't going anywhere unless the bureaucracy changes with the times, and it may even kill the hobby.
Patrick, I agree with your points. If the FAA was really concerned about safety, they would focus ALL their efforts on the hobbyist newbies that cause all of the issues. Since they can't find them, they make an example by requiring commercial operators to jump through hoops and sometimes completely make it impossible to fly "Legally". We all know this is an ever changing environment, especially wth the regulations. We just have to adapt as they are laid out for us and continue to operate safely. To answer your question about the movie houses, yes they are now getting 333's, in fact the first 7 exemptions granted where to some of the largest movie houses out in California. They also just have the same pilots that were flying the full size helicopters operate their drones. Also when flying outside of the US, they really don't have to worry about the FAA, just the local regulations. We all know that there are many taking money and flying without exemptions and there are those with exemptions who have no interest in flying correctly with the rules set forth in their exemptions, I.E. flying without a licensed pilot, not filing NOTAM's, etc. Since there is also monthly reporting required, the FAA will eventually catch up with those operators and for those filing NOTAM's but not flying with licensed pilots, the FAA is performing ramp checks of operators, so they will also be flushed out and their exemptions revoked.
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