This is an amazing time to be a consumer drone pilot, and now is more important than ever to practice safe flying. The growth in consumer drones over the past few years has swelled the number of drone pilots looking to have fun and to even engage in new microbusiness opportunities. This proliferation of drones and related market opportunities for pilots makes it imperative for the UAV community to establish and follow clear safety rules for operating drones. We must do this before a handful of incidents sabotage an otherwise positive trajectory for using drones in society.
The incident last night that involved a hobbyist accidentally crashing a drone on the White House grounds should never happen. However, without a strong focus on safety from both the internal community as well as external bodies, these accidents will happen again. President Obama is right, we need better drone regulations. That is why we work with the FAA to accelerate the regulatory process, and why we work with other companies in the space to share best practices. In addition, our WORKMODE initiative is centered around safety and drone pilot certification. Pilots who sign up with WORKMODE and leverage our data processing software will go through an online safety course as well as a skill demonstration before they can be matched with map and data clients.
The increased popularity of flying drones needs to be matched with widely understood and practiced rules for flying drones safely. Experienced and inexperienced pilots alike should teach each other and police each other on responsible flying. Going forward, we all need to push for this kind of environment and make the consumer drone story a successful one.