Approved Drone Pilots (ADP), a representative body of the largest number of professional drone pilots in the UK, has welcomed DJI’s signal for caution on drone sighting reporting post-Gatwick.
Highlighting the need for care, especially when events are unfolding ADP stressed that it is important not to jump to conclusions as historically, drone incidents turn out to be disproved on investigation.
It outlined how when human factors are involved in the identification of objects or lights in the sky, there is a significant potential for false positive sightings of drones, saying it would support robust sanity checking of sightings using proven counter drone technology.
The statement, released by ADP late last week, went on to describe how in the recent alleged drone sighting at Heathrow, ADS-B monitoring showed a police helicopter in attendance for an extended period very close to the airfield which coincided with sightings cited in the press and videos of lights on social media.
It also confirmed that ADP members including ‘Crowded Space Drones’ have been assisting authorities to investigate recent disruptions at UK airports.
Nicholas Drye, co-founder of ADP thinks it is important that people understand that drones are just a tool to help people in their work.
He explained: “Whilst people will have seen their use in Hollywood blockbusters, TV programmes and adverts; most of the commercial drone work in the UK today is for much more mundane tasks such as: surveying high or inaccessible buildings; mapping terrain and assisting the agricultural sector. Drones are also used daily by our Police, Fire, Ambulance and search and rescue services.”
He continued: “The use of drones is reducing the risk to our workforces, providing better information for us all, and most importantly helping to save lives. ADP values its close relationship to the CAA and other entities and will continue to forge new relationships to support our safety and education initiatives.”