Iprosurv has secured Extended Visual Line of Sight permissions from the Civil Aviation Authority for its network of remote pilots.
Standard aviation regulations insist that drones remain within the pilot’s sight at all times during flight which has historically limited flight distances to around 500m but Iprosurv’s new permissions allow its remote pilots to fly drones up to 2km from the launch site, with no direct line of sight required by the remote pilot.
The special permissions issued by the CAA have so far been granted to less than 1% of the nation’s commercial drone operators.
Commenting on the move, Iprosurv co-founder and CEO, Rebecca Jones, said: “We are delighted that the CAA has once again recognised the high level of training, safety and monitoring that takes place across our network of remote pilots and has seen fit to provide us with these new permissions.
“What may seem like a technicality is actually a huge leap forward in the capabilities of drones, particularly in the early assessment of disaster areas, assisting the emergency services and in the survey of inaccessible buildings.”
Adding: “These exemptions will allow us to stream footage and data direct to the client’s desktop even before a site has been physically visited.”
Currently, when faced with a large survey area, pilots often have to stop a flight once the limits of line of site have been reached, drive to the next launch site and start the process again.
Iprosurv says its new level of functionality will allow insurers, property managers and the emergency services to view the entire area and assess and triage the situation in real time.
Jones continued: “Drones have always had the potential to completely change the way we respond to disasters or large-scale surveys but having the ability to remain in the air for longer, going further distances and relaying real time data back to the client is a huge step forward.
“In granting these permissions, the CAA has shown a welcome willingness to help unlock the commercial and societal benefits of drones and we look forward to introducing our new capabilities to all of our clients.”