Flying drones is a perfectly safe hobby but it is important to adhere to a few rules to ensure that you not only stay safe, but you also stay legal.
In recent times, there has been a significant amount of bad press surrounding drone usage and these cases always come down to pilots doing things that they shouldn’t. At Airgineers, we are advocates of safe and legal drone usage. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are operating your drone in a safe and legal manner so take the time to familiarise yourself with the basic rules.
The following advice relates to usage of any radio controlled flying model, not just drones.
Always keep your drone in sight
This means you can see and avoid other things whilst flying. In the case of Airgineers, we fly using FPV. In this case, you must have another person with you known as a spotter who can see your drone for you and warn you of any problems
Stay below 400ft (120m)
This is far higher than we ever need to fly when racing
Keep at least 150ft (50m) away
From other people and properties and at least 500ft (150m) from crowds of people and built up areas
Do not fly anyhere near airports or airfields
If in doubt, find somewhere else to fly. Download the DroneAssist app for Android or iOS created by NATS (National Air Traffic Services) to help you decide if in area is safe to fly in
Only use your video transmitter (VTX) in the 25mW mode
Lithium polymer (LiPo) battery safety
LiPo batteries are used on racing drones because they are light and for their size and weight, they can store a large amount of energy. They can also be discharged very quickly which is important when powering lots of electric motors.
LiPo batteries are safe to use but much like flying drones, you should follow some simple rules to prevent short circuits and accidental fires.
- When charging or storing your LiPo batteries, make sure the battery pack is in a fireproof LiPo safety bag
- Only charge your batteries with a proper LiPo battery charger with a “balanced charging” facility
- Never leave batteries unattended whilst charging
- Set the low battery warning alarm on your drone as detailed in our instructional videos. Do not continue to fly longer than necessary once the alarm is sounding