Drone pilot is flying high after exam pass

Andrew Bryson flying his camera quadcopter.
Andrew Bryson flying his camera quadcopter.

A photographer is flying high after securing a drone pilot’s licence in record time.

Commercial photographer Andrew Bryson, from Morpeth, started flying a camera drone to give his pictures a new dimension but, under Civil Aviation Authority rules, he needed to get a Permission for Aerial Work before he could use his radio controlled aircraft for commercial purposes.

I was debriefed on how I did, then told me I had passed. I was over the moon

Andrew Bryson

He turned to the company that had originally supplied his quadcopter, North Shields based Heliguy, and impressed his training instructors by passing his flight test just one month after taking the theory exam.

Heliguy works with a CAA-approved National Qualified Entity, to provide a four-day course at its headquarters on the Orion Business Park.

For the theory test, Andrew was a star pupil and scored 100 per cent, followed four weeks later by the practical exam, where he had to carry out pre-flight checks, perform a site inspection and risk assessment, brief his examiners, fly the missions he was given and then give a mission debrief.

“I then just had the nervous wait until I found out if I had failed or passed,” Andrew said.

“The examiners were only away about 30 seconds but it felt like ages. I was debriefed on how I did, then they told me I had passed. I was over the moon.”

Sales manager at Heliguy, Scott Henderson, said “Andrew is a shining example of what can be achieved on a commercial pilot’s course at Heliguy.

“UAV operators need to take their responsibilities seriously in this exciting and rapidly developing industry. Andrew was totally committed to get the best out of the course and then went on to pass his flight assessment in double quick time despite having no previous aviation related experience.

“We are sure the success of people like Andrew will encourage other aspiring commercial drone pilots to work hard and realise their dream by signing up for a Heliguy course.”