Drone training lifts engineers’ skills to new heights

by Hannah van Rooyen

Drone training lifts engineers’ skills to new heights

It’s no secret that we invest heavily in the training and development of our workforce. With a number of employees currently enrolled on professional courses and others having recently become qualified first-aiders, we’re definitely not a team that stands still for long!

Helping individuals to build their skills and confidence is central to Smith Brothers’ successes, so we are always keen to support them with exciting ventures that will benefit their professional development.

The latest team members to embark on such training were commissioning engineer Liam Smith and civil tendering and construction manager Chris Fitton, who attended a 3-day course earlier this month at the Drone Pilot Academy in Barnsley.

Encompassing both theoretical and practical elements of drone flying, the course covered the aviation laws and regulations that govern Small Unmanned Surveillance Aircraft, along with aviation charts, UK airspace restrictions, basic meteorology and aircraft safety. The duo additionally accumulated three hours of recorded flight time each. This learning culminated in a multiple-choice theory exam and practical assessment on the final day of the programme.

Following this essential basic training, the pair are now in the process of obtaining their CAA licenses, which will enable them to man Smith Brothers’ shiny new DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone!

To begin with, the new equipment will just be used by the two trained pilots to survey sites before and after jobs, to provide a thorough picture of necessary and completed works. We will also be using it to record footage of works in progress and finished assignments that we can then showcase online and at events – it certainly captures some impressive shots!

But as Liam and Chris get to grips with the technology – and others on the workforce undertake similar training – we hope to start making the most of the drone’s potential to even further expand our turnkey offerings. As well as performing 3D surveys of land and buildings, it can additionally be used with DNOs for pole-top inspections of overhead line networks, so we will be striving to add these to our service offerings soon. Until then, you can check out some of our on-site footage here.

Watch this space (and the skies) for the latest from our pilots…

Drone training lifts engineers’ skills to new heights Drone training lifts engineers’ skills to new heights Drone training lifts engineers’ skills to new heights
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