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Advantages Of Gaining PFCO (Other Than Commercial Operation) ?

Rich146

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Hi All
I’m in the process of applying to gain a PFCO, but firstly have to convince my employer to pay for it.
I have to come up with a list of reasons why it’s worth having versus recreational use. Other than the main obvious ( commercial - financial reward) what other benefits are there over recreational ?
Thanks.
 
Are you doing the kind of work for your employer that requires a PfCO? It’s a bit of a minefield what does and doesn’t count! I would say that having done groundschool and trained with an NQE, I’m a much safer, more aware pilot than I ever would have been without the training. There’s no doubt your skill set would improve hugely if you were to get qualified. Then there’s the obvious access improvements - being able to fly at 50m separation with a PfCO as compared to having to keep a 150m distance (sub 7kg) is a huge bonus. Good luck with it - hope you get a green light!
 
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Thanks for this. Very useful . I take it one couldn’t apply for a non standard permission until a standard permission (PFCO) has been granted ? Ie flying in controlled airspace over 7kg, you couldn’t just phone the CAA to check ok with only a recreational ?

Cheers.
Are you doing the kind of work for your employer that requires a PfCO? It’s a bit of a minefield what does and doesn’t count! I would say that having done groundschool and trained with an NQE, I’m a much safer, more aware pilot than I ever would have been without the training. There’s no doubt your skill set would improve hugely if you were to get qualified. Then there’s the obvious access improvements - being able to fly at 50m separation with a PfCO as compared to having to keep a 150m distance (sub 7kg) is a huge bonus. Good luck with it - hope you get a green light!
 
I guess the bottom line is , the CAA wont grant anything ,if you don’t have standard permission . Makes sense.
 
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Does your business warrant the cost (training, insurance, equipment, CAA fees etc) and time involved in getting the Pfco? Also, don't forget that you need at least 2 hours flight time on your Flight Log in the 3 months preceding the renewal. If you're not doing that, you'll have to go out and get some training flights in....

Sometimes it might be better just to buy in the expertise on an ad hoc basis. If you want to get it for personal reasons, that's fine, but for a business it might not be the most cost-effective route, hence the reason for your boss to not fund it.
 
PfCO is well worth doing in my opinion even if you're not working commercially. The theoretical work is fascinating and brings a certain amount of insight into the factors that keep a drone in the air. The practical is not too demanding, but difficult enough, skills such as flying in ATTI mode can make the difference between losing your drone and bringing it home in one piece if GPS fails
 
It would be useful to know what industry you are in and therefore how it would be a benefit to the business. If you are likely to take photos or video of sites/property to use for publicity, social media etc, it would require a PfCO to remain legal. To obtain Public Liability Insurance for these flights would also require a PfCO. To clarify the earlier response, without a PfCO you have to remain 150m from any congested area which includes public spaces for recreation.
 
Are you doing the kind of work for your employer that requires a PfCO? It’s a bit of a minefield what does and doesn’t count! I would say that having done groundschool and trained with an NQE, I’m a much safer, more aware pilot than I ever would have been without the training. There’s no doubt your skill set would improve hugely if you were to get qualified. Then there’s the obvious access improvements - being able to fly at 50m separation with a PfCO as compared to having to keep a 150m distance (sub 7kg) is a huge bonus. Good luck with it - hope you get a green light!
I agree wholeheartedly with your comments. I too feel the same way. I feel more confident, but not in a stupid way, and I also feel more in control, particularly as I practice the manoeuvres for the flight test wver6 time I can get flying, which isn’t much at the moment.
On an entirely personal note I also feel a sense of achievement that I can do something now that is of value. I have lost two previous careers to my advancing medical condition, now I have something that I can do even sat in my wheels. Not something you can share with your employer, it the extra confidence and control is certainly very important.
 
It would be useful to know what industry you are in and therefore how it would be a benefit to the business. If you are likely to take photos or video of sites/property to use for publicity, social media etc, it would require a PfCO to remain legal. To obtain Public Liability Insurance for these flights would also require a PfCO. To clarify the earlier response, without a PfCO you have to remain 150m from any congested area which includes public spaces for recreation.
I’m in Research so technically don’t need the permission to operate . My employer will happily pay it’s just I have to produce a document to warrant the course . Why and how it benefits the company for me to take the course basically. It’s just a formality my employer adopts. Once I have financial backing I’ll get onto which local choices of course are available although I have done some research obviously to obtain pricing etc .
 
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The SUAV I’m currently using for projects is an old ( as in tech ) S900 but I’d rather use my inspire on the course. Just being able to slot a cartridge in , instead of mounting a fidly Lipo pack seems a way of making things run a bit smoother and more convenient to carry etc. I’m assuming adjusting the ops manual on the course from inspire to S900 would simply be mostly spec?
Thanks for all your replies so far guys. Much appreciated and interesting to hear your reasons for doing it.
 
One more question although moving to separate discussion , do any of you guys keep manual as an option on the controller or do you just have GPS , ATTI ? Reason I ask is because I find manual a bit of liability as if switched in error could see the hex fall out the sky before you can say “oh sh1#!” Lol
 

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