iRed is now offering commercial drone flying training courses after becoming officially approved.
The Hampshire-based business specialises in infrared technology and made a move into the UAV market in recent years after combining its cameras with drones.
Now, after meeting standards set by the CAA, the firm is able to train drone pilots at its centre in Emsworth near Portsmouth alongside its existing infrared camera training.
Those who complete the drone course will receive a Commercial Remote Pilot Qualification (CRPQ).
The company says it will teach students about operating procedures, airmanship, aviation safety, charts and navigation, with night flying training being made available too.
Alan Mak MP, who recently visited the business, said: “I was delighted to visit fast-growing local business iRed. It specialises in not only using drones to survey sites with thermal imaging cameras, but also offering training courses in the safe use of the technology.”
He continued: “The company is a fantastic example of a local-business exploiting opportunities created by disruptive new technology to secure jobs and grow the local economy, with similar businesses following iRed’s lead, Britain will be in an excellent position to lead the world in advanced technology.”
Ray Faulkner, founder and managing director of iRed and a former airline pilot, thinks getting the CAA approval will help move his company forward.
He stated: “Along with the hardware we supply, we run a series of training courses. Thermal imaging technology is not as simple as saying red equates to hot and blue to cold. The data needs interpreting correctly.
“Drones have brought a whole new dimension to our work, but flying them commercially does require special permissions. Being approved by the CAA means our course is a way for people to become qualified, enabling them to use drones for a whole variety of inspection purposes.
He concluded: “As a company we intend to keep pushing forward and bringing technology to those who can benefit from it.”