Using Drones for Construction and Inspection Projects

Using Drones for Construction and Inspection Projects

Using Drones for Construction and Inspection Projects

Using Drones for Construction and Inspection Projects

Despite being one of the largest industries in the world, the construction industry is resistant to adopting technological advances. The Globe and Mail reports that the Canadian construction sector is taking its time to warm up to new tech like drones with three-quarters of construction companies in Canada rating their digital maturity as “fairly low.” Although the use of drones is gaining in popularity, not everyone understands how much they can increase efficiency and safety on construction sites. Read on to learn how starting a drone program for your construction business can help you reach new heights (no pun intended?).

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How can Drones Improve Efficiency in Construction and Inspection?

Construction and inspection drones offer several advantages in the construction industry whether it’s a new build you are dealing with or inspecting an existing property. Read on to learn some of the benefits:

Increase Safety: Safety is paramount in potentially dangerous environments like construction sites. Drones can be used to carry out minute inspections without human lives being put at risk via workers climbing tall poles or walking around heavy machinery in operation. Apart from keeping humans safer, it can help avoid costs related to injuries caused during site inspection like lost project time, litigation, medical bills, and compensation. Drones can also be used to carry out site perimeter safety inspections so breaches can be identified and repaired quickly. 

Up-to-Date Site Surveys: Drones can provide accurate and detailed images of sites during preconstruction as well as throughout the entire construction process. The issues caused by slightly disjointed information with the probability of human error and out-of-date information are done away with as drones can be used to survey large areas in short spans of time. This gives you the opportunity to carry out more frequent surveys as your project progresses, and access accurate survey information at the click of a button. 

Real-Time Tracking: The faster errors are discovered, the quicker they can be rectified. Drones can be used to gather project data at regular intervals taking measurements and documenting changes on the ground so construction site managers can check the project for progress as well as for any built areas that are not accurately aligned with the original construction plans. This access to information at the click of a button can help project managers and their crews make faster and more effective decisions.

Cost Savings: Drone programs quickly pay for themselves as construction projects progress. They help save on travel costs as all authorized personnel can survey site data and images from a cloud as needed without having to physically travel to the site. Perimeter inspections can help prevent the theft of construction tools and equipment while health and safety inspections can quickly determine if safety measures are being implemented and violations addressed before any incidents take place.

Drones also help with contract reconciliation by accurately measuring the quantity of work carried out. For example, if a contractor is to be paid according to the amount of earth that has been moved, drones can collect millions of data points to provide an accurate estimate to avoid miscalculations and overcharges.

Inspections: Drones make it easier to inspect civil construction projects like pipelines which typically cover vast expanses and often difficult terrain in a much shorter period than manual inspections. Any damages to these can be identified, and rectified, quickly. Drones can also be used to inspect hard-to-reach places like the insides of chimneys in industrial settings without putting human lives at risk.

What Types of Drones Are Most Suitable for Construction and Inspection?

There are several types of drones that may be suitable for construction and inspection, depending on the task at hand including:

Drones with High-Resolution Cameras: Drones with high-resolution cameras capture high-quality and detailed images of sites to give you the visual images you need to plan a project and monitor its progress. 

Drones with Thermal Sensors: Drones equipped with thermal sensors can be used in various forms of inspections where there is a need to detect heat leaks, check surface temperatures, and to measure ventilation, heating, and air conditioning systems.

Drones with Lidar Sensors: Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) equipped drones are used to create precise 3D models of terrain.

Drones are a valuable tool that any construction business can embrace. At Coastal Drone, we have the expertise and experience to help you earn your drone pilot license or to help your business set up an in-house drone program.  Learn more about our 

enterprise services here or get in touch with us today.


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Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.

What You Need to Know About Drone Registration

What You Need to Know About Drone Registration

What You Need to Know About Drone Registration

What You Need to Know About Drone Registration

Drones have made it easy to take mind-blowing and captivating photos, videos and cinematic scenes

Thanks to these devices leveraging sophisticated technology, they have revolutionized the creative, mapping and search as well as rescue industries.

But in most cases, you need to register your drone before you can fly it.

To provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the registration requirements, let’s delve into everything you should be aware of when it comes to registering your drone.

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Drone Registration Basics

In Canada, you need to register your drone depending on the circumstances and weight of the drone.

The table below shows when you should register your drone.

Drone Weight Registration Requirement
250 g to 25 kg You should register the drone
Under 250 g No need to register unless it’s modified to weigh 250 g or more
Over 25 kg No registration is needed, but you require a special flight operations certificate

To register your drone, you need to do the following:

  1. Create an account at the Drone Management Portal.
  2. Input the drone’s type, make, model, serial number, and weight.
  3. Have the drone’s purchase date handy just in case you need to input it.
  4. Pay $5 using either your Visa, Mastercard, or American Express.

After you register your drone successfully, you will get a registration number.

Mark the registration number on the drone because it serves as a unique identifier for your drone. It is just like theSocial Insurance Number (SIN)but for your drone.

So in case of an incident or accident, the authorities and law enforcement will be able to track your drone easily and faster.

Furthermore, marking your drone with the registration number is one way to comply with Transport Canada ’s rules.

For instance, flying an unregistered or unmarked drone can cause the authorities to fine you up to $1,000 for individuals and $5,000 for corporations.

Also, if you are a foreigner, you cannot register a drone in Canada unless you have a Special Flight Operations Certificate for Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (SFOC-RPAS).

Transport Canada issues the SFOC-RPAS to enable a foreigner who has passed all the relevant exams, and has a valid drone pilot certificate to fly a drone.

Drone Pilot Licensing in Canada

Whether you are a citizen or a foreigner, you cannot fly a drone even if you have registered it, if you do not have a license.

So, to get a license, you must pass these two Canadian drone tests:

A.Small Basic Exam

To enroll for this test, you must be at least 14 years old and pay $10. Then you have 90 minutes to complete the 35 multiple-choice questions.

To pass, you need a score higher than 65%. But if you fail to achieve this score, you have to wait 24 hours before you can retake the Small Basic Exam. You also need to pay $10 for every retake.

When you pass this text, you get a Pilot Certificate – Basic Operations.

B. Small Advanced Exam

Once you pass the Small Basic Exam, you are eligible to take the next one–the Small Advanced Exam, if you are at least 16 years old.

You still have to pay $10 for any other retakes you have.
However, this exam is a bit extensive, but with a shorter time to attempt it. The exam has 50 multiple-choice questions, but you should complete it in 60 minutes. If you get a score above 80% then you get a pass, if not, you need to have another attempt after 24 hours.

You can check the results through the Drone Management Portal and if you have passed you get your Pilot Certificate – Advanced Operations.

To give you an added edge and help you pass these exams, enroll with Coastal Drone for our drone pilot course

Take a Drone Pilot Course to Get Your Drone Pilot License

Since the two Canadian drone tests cover a wide range of topics related to drone operation, safety, regulations, and flying techniques, you need to have the necessary skills.

You must achieve a core of at least 65% in 90 minutes. Or 80% in 60 minutes. Given the volume of questions, you’ll need all the assistance you can get, especially from experts like Coastal Drone.

We provide structured and customized training programs that increase the likelihood of passing the tests while complying with Transport Canada-specific regulations and requirements.

Enroll in our drone pilot courses today and let us take you through how to register and fly your drone to unlock a world of possibilities.


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Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.

Essential Tips for Passing a Drone Exam

Essential Tips for Passing a Drone Exam

Essential Tips for Passing a Drone Exam

Essential Tips for Passing a Drone Exam

The Canadian drone exam is an open book with multiple-choice questions. That is, you can flip through or research for answers throughout the exam, and you can select your answers from the multiple-choice options provided.

However, having access to search engines or any other resources does not make it easy to pass the exam. It depends on you and how you prepare.

This is why we have compiled these tips that we use on our students to help them pass their drone exams easily.

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Should Your Business Create a Drone Program?

1. Prepare for Your Exam by Leveraging Free Resources

The internet has a lot of valuable and free resources. The only thing you get to spend is your time. However, you need to understand how to navigate through all this information since the internet is also saturated with a lot of irrelevant information.

To help you make efficient use of your time, the table below shows some of the most valuable resources for Canadian drone exam preparation:


Resource Description
Unmanned: Textbook for RPAS, 2nd Ed. A comprehensive textbook covering various aspects of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), and is a valuable study resource for the exam.
Basic and Advanced Drone Flying Regulations  These are the official regulations that govern remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) in Canada. 
5. Knowledge Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems 250 g up to and including 25 kg, Operating within Visual Line-of-Sight (VLOS) (TP 15263) This document outlines what RPAS pilots within a certain weight range operating within visual line-of-sight (VLOS) need to know. 
Regulations Amending the Canadian Aviation Regulations (Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems) This document contains the official regulations that govern remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) in Canada. 
Drone Safety Resources that all drone operators should be familiar with to ensure safe and responsible flight operations.

2. Attempt the Small Basic Exam First

Even though you need an Advanced Operations license, consider taking the Small Basic Exam first.

This is because:

  • You learn the basics needed for being a drone pilot in Canada.
  • You establish a strong foundation in drone operation that makes it easy to pass the Small Advanced exam.
  • You reduce the possibility of the Advanced Test’s more difficult questions overwhelming you.
  • It increases your confidence in passing other advanced Canadian drone exams asmost people find the Basic exam hard.
  • Gives you an edge in tackling the Advanced Exam as it has more questions—50—and a shorter time; 60 minutes. On the other hand, the basic exam has 35 questions, and you have 90 minutes to attempt them.

3. Answer All the Easy Questions First

During the actual exam, treat it as you would any other.

Go through the questions as you mark the easy ones or the ones you are very sure you can answer without any help.

For instance, use “E” to symbolize an easy question and “N.E” for the not-so-easy ones.

Then, start answering the easy (E) questions to save time. Even if you have 90 minutes to tackle 35 questions, these minutes go very fast.

When you’ve finished with the easy questions, go on to those you can answer, even if you need to double-check your response (N.E).
Remember to keep your eyes on the prize.

In this case, the prize is a score higher than 65% for the Basic exam and 80% for the Advanced one.

Also, the goal here is to use as little time as possible so that you have time to tackle the hard questions and confirm the answers of the N.E.

Next, bookmark the link to this article so that you can access the table with the list of resources easily to answer the hard questions.

Open each document or article in a separate tab on your browser and use Ctrl+F for PC or Cmd+F for MAC to search for answers easily.

But don’t waste too much time, so that you can take a few minutes to go over all of your answers.

Pass Your Drone Exams with Coastal Drone Pilot Courses

To have an added advantage that helps you improve your chances of passing the Canadian drone exams, enroll in our drone pilot courses.

As a team of professional instructors with in-depth knowledge of drone legislation and operations, we provide comprehensive training and preparation for success in drone tests.

Our training will teach you everything you need to know to pass the exams.

Enroll in our drone pilot course today and let us help you pass the exams and become an expert drone pilot.


Download our E-Book

Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.

The Pros and Cons of Using a Drone in Real Estate

The Pros and Cons of Using a Drone in Real Estate

The Pros and Cons of Using a Drone in Real Estate

The Pros and Cons of Using a Drone in Real Estate

83% of potential homeowners prefer using a real estate agent who uses a drone to showcase their property.

Because when it comes to real estate, it’s all about the view!
And having a property that has fantastic views will make you sign up as a homeowner quickly.

Unfortunately, it is difficult to capture footage of captivating hidden views from awkward angles, which is where drones come in.

A drone allows you to take clear aerial images or videos of your property, giving the prospective homeowner a sneak peek of what they are getting.

However, using a drone comes with its cons.

So, here are the benefits and drawbacks of using drones in real estate.

Should Your Business Create a Drone Program?
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Pros of Using Drones in Real Estate

Drones make capturing captivating footage for your property easier. But what it does better is capture an aerial view that is perfect for real estate because:

A. Captivates Potential Buyers With Immersive Experiences

In real estate, you need to sell the idea, the dream, and what the property could be for the potential homeowner or tenant.

So, to create an immersive experience, you need to show the property as not just a house or an empty lot.

But as an unfolding story.

Therefore, paint a picture for the tenant using aerial views to help them envision what the space might be.

Also, the aerial view of your property will enable you to create an unforgettable story that ignites the interest of your potential buyers.

B. Obtain Unique Views of Your Property

With a drone soaring high above, you can record every tiny detail from angles you couldn’t have been able to capture before.

This is usually challenging from a ground-level perspective.

Therefore when the home buyer or tenant clicks play on your
ad or video they can see exactly what they are getting.

You can also do a voice-over to spice up the experience by explaining the following:

  • When the house was built
  • What plants are in the yard
  • Other design features like hidden doors or unique elements that add more value to the property
  • Possible expansions where applicable.

And in real estate being unique makes you stand out of the crowd.

So, by using a voice-over in your aerial footage, explaining all the details to your potential clients no matter how small, it makes the client feel understood and that makes them feel that you are aware of their needs.

Cons of Using Drones in Real Estate

Using a drone may enable you to create mind-blowing immersive experiences but it comes with its challenges.

1. You Need a Drone Pilot Certification

To fly a commercial drone in Canada, you must meet Transport Canada’s requirements.

For instance, you must first enroll in and pass the Basic and Small Advanced Exams.

You also need to Pass the in-person flight review and only then will Transport Canada issue you with the advanced operations pilot certificate.

2. Privacy Concerns

Operating a drone for real estate brings along safety and privacy concerns.

For example, if your property is an apartment with multiple neighbours, capturing aerial views of the space may make the other residents feel as if you are violating their privacy boundaries.

These could lead to many legal issues and even losses as some neighbours can destroy your drone even though it is illegal.

Use a Drone in Real Estate by Balancing the Pros and Cons

Drones like any advanced technology, come with their share of pros and drawbacks as discussed above.

And to paint a clear picture, the table below adds more summarised benefits and drawbacks of using a drone in real estate.

Pros Cons
Captivating and immersive buyer experiences Regulatory restrictions
Access to challenging areas Noise disturbance
Cost-effective in the long run Potential privacy concerns
Highlighting property features Technical complexity
Remote viewing from anywhere A costly initial investment like purchasing a high-quality drone

However, the pros outweigh the cons since you can tackle most drawbacks by following the set regulations for drone piloting. 

But you need to know how to use a drone and this is why you should enroll in a drone piloting course by Coastal Drone.

At Coastal Drone, we have the expertise and experience to teach you how to fly a drone without breaking any laws.

Hence, at the end of the course, you will be able to effectively pilot a drone. This will enable you to get eye-catching footage of your property for immersive experiences for prospective customers.

Enroll in our drone pilot courseand operate it like a pro within no time. A drone could be the secret weapon your real estate listings have been waiting for.


Download our E-Book

Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.

Flying Your Drone Safely: A Complete Guide

Flying Your Drone Safely: A Complete Guide

Flying Your Drone Safely: A Complete Guide

Flying Your Drone Safely: A Complete Guide

If you are into content creation, photography or survey mapping, a drone is what separates an okay shot from a mind-blowing one.

How? The angles and clarity from a drone aerial shot make all the difference. It is challenging or impossible to achieve this level of clarity and coverage from ground-level views.

However, you need to fly your drone carefully and safely.

If you don’t, you could end up hurting others, negatively impacting your goals, and attract hefty fines and penalties.

Nonetheless, with the help of this guide, you will understand the legal requirements, regulations, and safety guidelines, allowing you to fly your drone safely in Canada.

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DJI Mavic 3

Understand the Legal Requirements and Regulations

Transport Canada and Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) have set regulations that you must follow before flying a drone in Canada.
These include:

Failure to comply with these requirements, you risk attracting the penalties shown in the table below.

Violation Penalty for recreational use Penalty for commercial use
Flying in no-fly zones like airports $1000 $5000
Flying without drone registration $1,000 $5,000
Violating privacy by recording without consent $5,000 $5,000
Flying recklessly or endangering people $3,000 $15,000
Ignoring local bylaws Fines vary depending on the municipality but there is the possibility of drone confiscation Same as recreational

Adhere to Safety Guidelines When Flying a Drone

You cannot fly a drone safely unless you follow the set rules.

Not because that’s what you are legally required to do. But because it is your social responsibility to avoid causing harm to others while flying your drone.

Additionally, following safety guidelines can help you take better shots because you minimize the risk of accidents or mishaps, which can be stressful and distracting.

After all, you cannot take stunning shots or footage while distracted, even from ground level. For most of the amazing shots ever taken, the photographer has spent hours trying to capture the perfect shot; just look at Joel Sartore’s amazing wildlife photography.

Therefore, to adhere to safety guidelines, use these tips:

  1. Familiarize yourself with Canadian drone regulations and also the ones specific to your province.
  2. Maintain the necessary rules for each line of sight, whether VLOS, BVLOS, or EVLOS (Extended Visual Line of Sight).
  3. Check the battery level a few hours before every flight to ensure it is in good condition and fully charged. Flying with a low battery can result in overheating causing accidents, reduced flight time, inconsistent performance and even drone malfunction.
  4. Do pre-flight mapping before you fly your drone. This lets you identify potential obstacles, power lines, or other hazards thus making it easy to fly your drone.
  5. Fly slowly and smoothly so as not to encounter any obstacles or sudden movement which could cause accidents.
  6. Fly during the day if you can. It will enable you to identify and navigate potential obstacles easily.
  7. If you need to fly at night, attach bright LED lights to your drone for increased visibility. Also, avoid crowded and residential areas to respect others’ privacy.
  8. Have a spotter even if you are flying VLOS. A spotter is commonly used in BVLOS and EVLOS because of the extended range and distance the drone can travel beyond your direct line of sight. Therefore, a spotter provides real-time information about any potential hazards on the flight path enabling you to fly your drone safely.
  9. If you want to fly at any Canadian national park, always have permission first from the relevant authority like the Field Unit Superintendent of Parks. Then follow the set regulations by Parks Canada to ensure you do not risk the wildlife as you fly your drone.

Learn How to Fly Your Drone Safely in Canada

You cannot fly your drone safely if you do not know how to.

Flying your drone safely starts with learning and understanding the dos and don’ts. Not just taking a drone and then trying to fly it like it is a Liftoff®: FPV Drone Racing simulator episode.

And in Langley, Coastal Drone provides a comprehensive drone piloting course.

We also have dependable trainers with the knowledge and experience to teach you how to fly your drone safely.

Furthermore, we stay current on changing drone flying rules and regulations in Canada, ensuring that our training is always up to date.

Sign up for our drone pilot training today.

Let us teach you how to fly your drone safely, whether you are a beginner looking to learn the basics or an experienced pilot looking to improve your skills.


Download our E-Book

Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.

Flying Your Drone Safely: A Complete Guide

Flying a Drone in National Parks in Canada

Flying a Drone in National Parks in Canada

Flying a Drone in National Parks in Canada

Flying a drone over national parks is one of the most longed-for activities.

Seeing the enchanting forests, gushing waterfalls, snow-capped mountains, or the undisturbed wilderness encircled by an equally stunning environment is breathtaking.

And the timely capture of a mountain lion making its kill is an award-winning photograph.

But it is not as simple as it appears.

You must obtain permission from the Field Unit Superintendent of Parks to fly your drone over any national park in Canada as you would in other unrestricted regions.

Here is why you can’t fly your drone in Canadian national parks, exceptions, and how to use drone maps to get the best photos and videos.

Should Your Business Create a Drone Program?
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Why Can’t You Fly Drones in Canadian National Parks?

Parks Canada has set restrictions on drone usage in parks because:

  1. Limit wildlife disturbance as most animals are usually very sensitive during breeding and nesting.
  2. Ensure that you do not harm birds that may view a drone as a predator causing them to panic and abandon nests or get hurt as they try to flee.
  3. National parks are popular tourist destinations because of the different wild animals, the breathtaking landscapes, and the tranquil environment filled with nature’s soothing sounds. However, the constant buzzing of drones will drown out the natural soundscape that nature provides, reducing the overall experience that we seek when visiting parks.
  4. Protect cultural and historical sites from prying eyes or potential damage. Since most Canadian national parks have indigenous heritage sites, archaeological remains, or structures with historical value, drones flying by can cause damage or disturbance to these areas.

Exceptions to the Prohibition

Field Unit Superintendents can permit you to use drones but you have to obtain the proper permission and permits.

This includes ensuring that you meet all the Transport Canada requirements to fly a drone even before seeking a special permit.

First, contact the Field Unit Superintendents responsible for the national park you want to fly your drone.

Next, gather information about their drone policies, any restrictions, and the permit process.

Then, familiarize yourself with the guidelines and requirements so that when you are applying for permission, you understand what you need to do.

Remember, these are the only circumstances that the Field Unit Superintendents will permit you to fly your drone in national parks:

  • Any research and scientific study conducted within the national park like monitoring wildlife, studying habitats, or conducting environmental assessments.
  • Commercial filming and photography but you must obtain the necessary permits.
  • Special events hosted by Parks Canada for recreational use like capturing aerial footage for educational purposes, or supporting park management operations.

Plan National Parks Flights Using Drone Maps

While flying over uncharted territory in the National parks, you need a visual representation of the park’s boundaries, restricted areas, and flight restrictions.

This helps you plan your flight paths accordingly.

However, drone maps do come with their benefits and drawbacks and the table below lists some of them.

Pros of using drone maps in national parks  Cons of using drone maps in national parks 
Provides a visual representation of boundaries and designated zones Map accuracy and reliability may vary
Enhances situational awareness for safe drone navigation Limited real-time information on temporary flight restrictions
Assists in compliance with park regulations Overreliance on technology without on-site assessment
Contributes to the protection of wildlife and habitats Interpretation errors leading to misunderstandings
Helps plan drone flights effectively

Learn How to Leverage Drone Maps While Flying in National Parks

Before you venture into the national park, after you obtain authorization you need a drone map to help you identify the restricted areas easily.

And since drone maps require deep understanding to leverage their full potential, you need to learn how to use them from professionals like Coastal Drone.

Our experts will teach you effective flight planning techniques that integrate drone maps in our mapping and geomatic course.

This helps you identify suitable spots for take-off and landing without messing up with the ecosystem. It also allows you to select the best flight paths to record the most beautiful moments nature has to offer.

But we don’t just teach you how to use drone maps effectively; we also show you how to fly a drone like a pro to get the best shots.

Contact us today to start your photogrammetry and mapping lessons, and have you flying over Canadian National Parks as soon as you have approval.


Download our E-Book

Learn what it takes to get a drone pilot certificate!  Also included is some great information about where the drone industry is going.