My Experiences as a Drone Pilot

I came across this video, and decided to repost it, because it provides a great example of how a pilot should remain calm, and act professionally when confronted by a hostile onlooker.

I have watched the video several times, as a reminder of a similar incident which happened to me.  I was flying over a beachfront house, for a realtor, which was on a narrow lot and very close to the two neighboring houses.  For me to get the shots I wanted, it was necessary to fly low over the neighbor’s houses.  Ordinarily, I always knock on the neighbor’s door if the house is overflown at close range, but on this particular day I was too hurried and skipped that step.  As I was flying my orbit around the target house, the neighbour came out yelling, and saying that if he had a gun he’d shoot it down.  I tried explaining, and so did my spotter girlfriend, that we were there to do a professional job.  To make a long story short, I called the cops because I thought the mention of a gun was enough to warrant a complaint against him.  As it turned out, whilst holding the call on speakerphone with the hostile neighbour present, the cop was unimpressed with all the yelling that ensued.  She more or less told us to work it out.

A week went by, and I had time to reflect.  I wished that I hadn’t lost my temper.  I myself would be upset if a drone appeared flying low over my backyard, without my permission.  I decided to drive back to the angry neighbour and apologize.  Although he wouldn’t open the screen door, he admitted that he over-reacted, as did I, and that he wouldn’t have been upset if I had only asked first.  Lesson learned.