Drone safety: Dragon’s Den star backs drone safety firm
A company that runs the UK’s first national register for commercial and amateur drone pilots has secured a £60,000 investment after appearing on the BBC2 programme Dragon’s Den.
Mark Boyt, founder of the Drone Safe Register, received the investment from Dragon Peter Jones after making a pitch on Sunday’s (9 September) programme.
Mr Jones agreed to invest £60,000 for 40% of the business, which is the first official register for both commercial and amateur drone operators in the country.
Speaking as part of his pitch on the show, Mr Boyt said that inspection work made up a largest segment of the work his company carries out, ‘because it’s safer’. He added “We carried out a church spire inspection following a lightning strike. They were quoted £14,000 to put up scaffolding, but we were able to do the inspection using a drone for just £800.”
For commercial operators, it is the UK’s largest network of CAA approved pilots for hire and the biggest provider of stock aerial footage captured by its members.
All registered drones and pilots are marked with ID cards and branded lanyards to reassure the public they are flying safely within the law.
For amateur flyers, it is also the first national register whatsoever and provides access to crucial flight planning information, training and industry update.
“Concerns over safety and privacy must be taken seriously but it’s safe to say that most commercial drone pilots and hobbyists fly within the law and enjoy piloting their drones carefully and responsibly,” said Mr Boyt.
“However, the drone industry is rapidly growing and evolving and there is need for self-regulation while UK laws and regulations catch up and adapt to this new technology.
“It’s vitally important that drone operators fully comprehend how to fly their drone safely and responsibly before they unleash their expensive, high powered units, on the world.
“Collisions, crash landings, entering unauthorised fly space and data breaches are all too frequently experienced by those rushing in to it without the relevant knowledge and know how,” added Mr Boyt.
“Understanding where, when and how to fly a drone is critical. It’s also vital to ensure that all data captured is treated correctly and carefully to ensure public privacy is maintained as per the latest data regulations and to ensure proper precautions are in place to prevent hacking. Commercial operators must also have permission from the CAA which involves taking a written and practical test.”
Dragon Peter Jones added: “There are not many opportunities you have to invest in something that you not only feel passionately about, but actually is going to make a difference to so many people’s lives.
“Whilst there will always be those that flout the law for their own gain, we want the Drone Safe Register to support the thousands of responsible drone pilots there are in the UK that are fed up of being eyed suspiciously when flying their drone and to reassure the public that most of the drone operators in this country are not a risk to their safety or privacy.
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