Sep 24, 2020
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A New Marketplace For Pilots: Make Money Flying Drones

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Last month in Southern California s San Bernardino National Forest a large wildfire grew owing to drones. Firefighters engaging in an aerial attack had to land because drones were occupying their air space and posed the threat of a midair collision. The 3 tankers that dispense water from the air were grounded and stayed parked for the rest of the day allowing the fireplace to achieve momentum


Sadly this summer we’ve heard several accounts from firefighters about drones interfering with their air space and some are quite serious. For instance one drone pilot almost hit a chopper carrying seven firefighters. While drones may be helpful they are able to also be harmful (as we ve learned). The FAA remains identifying on what to do with drones and a way to control them from being a relentless interference inside the skies


Inside the meantime Droners. io a startup based out of Rhode Island is connecting experienced drone pilots with customers. Whether it s for marketing purposes filming or otherwise customers who don t own a drone or don t want to methods to fly one (safely) can hire out a drone pilot for their project


To be a drone pilot at the site you need to have a FAA 333 exemption which permits you to legally fly a UAV for commercial purposes. Dave Brown the founder is a kitesurfer. He posted a picture captured by a drone of himself kitesurfing on social media which got his friends intrigued


Friends on my Facebook would ask if someone in a helicopter took the photo of me kitesurfing. There were absolutely blown away by it and so was I. I knew it was something that the everyday person would love to have access to he said. Photo Courtesy of Droners. io PROMOTED So he started Droners


io a market for drone-related jobs and accredited drone pilots. Brown started with just a handful of pilots but now has a database of 800 pilots. Given the attention his little startup has received he s even contemplating opening it up to UK and Canadian drone pilots. While at the office however Brown stays just about his kitesurfing roots


During the summers he works from his 1985 Volkswagen Westfalia camper van sitting next to the beach where he kitesurfs. Photo Courtesy of Droners. io The pricing on Droners. io can vary drastically. Customers offer everything from $300 for a promotional video to more than $10 000 for a pro gig for a TV show with editing


Droners. io makes money by taking a percentage from each transaction: 10% with a maximum of $1 000. Some customers are seeking for drone pilots for more unique jobs. Together with this guy who wanted to propose to his girlfriend inside the woods and feature it filmed by a drone: Hello Pilots! Seeking to get a drone pilot with a drone having the ability to film and carry an engagement ring/box


Seeking to go on a hike with my girlfriend and feature a drone pop out of no where (in a chosen spot) and feature a drone come close enough to where I could grab the hoop box and propose while the drone continues to name each of the action on film


At the whole though Brown hopes that this service will allow more people to get drone footage safely. Though drones may well be becoming ubiquitous they don’t seem to be toys. That s why shooting wildfires with them remains a no-no

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