Here at Stardrone® we take Health & Safety very seriously. There are many individual items that have to be assessed and taken into consideration before and during drone operations of any kind.

Any project involving drones carries risk. Drone propellers move extremely fast, and are sharp and dangerous. There are a number of things that can go wrong, as some high-profile recent cases have shown – for example, the ‘holiday’ drone flying a mistletoe spring around a crowd at TGI Friday’s that cut the nose of a customer, or Enrique Iglesias’ recent run-in on stage with a drone that cost the performer several stitches. A thorough understanding of the risks can help us take steps to avoid them.

What sort of things can go wrong with a drone?

  • Crash due to a mechanical/electronic failure, a loss of contact between the pilot’s ground control transmitter and receiver on the aircraft. It could also crash due to unsuitable weather conditions or pilot error.

  • The aircraft could `fly away’ if control is lost between the pilot’s ground control transmitter and receiver.

  • Crash into other aircraft or into into people or structures.

How do we avoid such risks? First and foremost, by having registered, qualified, insured and experienced drone operators. The current requirement in the UK is for any "Commissioned" work (work that provides any benefit in kind) the Drone / UAV pilot / operator must have a PfCO. A PfCO is Permission for Commissioned Operation. To receive the PfCO an operator must receive training from a certified training provider, sit a theory test, complete an observed flight simulating an actual assignment and complete there Operations Manual. The Operations Manual is then submitted to the CAA along with proof of passing the required tests. The CAA assesses it and so long as it meets their stringent requirements they then issue a PfCO. This PfCO is held on a publicly available register so that any body can check that an operator is legitimate.You can then ensure that the operator is trained and that their insurance covers the costs of flying a Drone / UAV for performance or filming. 

NO PfCO = NO INSURANCE when taking commissioned work.

General Points that Stardrone® will work through with any customer:

  • Ensure that the pilot is briefed very clearly on what you plan to achieve before agreeing to hire them as there are real limitations on what can be achieved with regards to distances, locations and licensing conditions. 

  • Drones / UAVs must be flown in line of sight of the operator (unless the operator is in direct communication with controlled observers who have line of sight).

  • Drones / UAVs cannot be flown in classified air space and or near airports.

  • Permission must be obtained from the owner of the take-off point.

  • Drones / UAVs cannot be flown within 50 meters of structures, vehicles or people that are not under the control of the person in charge of the aircraft.

  • Drones / UAVs cannot be flown within 50 meters of a congested area or 150m of a large crowd of people. 

  • The pilot must be in a position where they cannot be pushed or jostled.

  • As a general rule the Drones / UAVs pilot should wholly concentrate on flying and a second operator or assistant should monitor / operate any onboard camera (where appropriate and where possible with the equipment used).


Crowd Controls:

If you require a drone(s) at an event, special measures must be taken to notify and obtain consent from audience members. Performance areas must be clearly demarcated so that drones fly a safe distance from people at all times.

All information presented here can be verified on the CAA website.

Stardrone® references CAP 1687 for all its operational procedure guidance as required by the CAA.