Now that drones, or small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS), are readily available, Scouts and Scouters may be considering incorporating them in an activity or using them to capture photos and videos.
If considering the use of a drone, or sUAS:
- Review and be familiar with the information at http://knowbeforeyoufly.org/ so you can fly responsibly. The organization provides these recommendations:
- Fly no higher than 400 feet and remain below any surrounding obstacles when possible.
- Keep your sUAS in eyesight at all times, and use an observer to assist if needed.
- Do not intentionally fly over unprotected persons or moving vehicles, and remain at least 25 feet away from individuals and vulnerable property.
- Ensure the operating environment is safe and that the operator is competent and proficient in the operation of the sUAS.
- Do not conduct surveillance or photograph persons in areas where there is an expectation of privacy.
- Be aware of and guided by the Sweet 16 of BSA Safety.
- Complete a Program Hazard Analysis to identify and be familiar with the hazards and risks associated with this activity. Pay particular attention to the potential legal liability for injuries and invasion of privacy.
- Take a PAUSE for safety prior to a flight.
- Councils considering using drones as part of a program should review NCAP Standards, in particular PD-111 and PD-112, which outline the expectation of conducting a risk analysis and having a plan to operate.
- Additional risk assessment tools can be found in the Enterprise Risk Management Committee Guidebook, No. 680-026, Appendix 1.