How do Drones help SurveyorsSee How do Drones help Surveyors from here. Surveyors find themselves operating in a whole range of different sectors including property purchases, land surveys, agriculture and construction. While it’s a profession that has normally remained quite static in how technology is used. Developments in drone technology have made a big difference. 

How do Drones help Surveyors

Drones lend themselves to multiple applications whether it’s for. Surveying land or checking over homes and business properties in urban locations. 

In the last decade, drones have gone from simple playthings and executive toys to serious disruptors in many industries. You cannot watch a film or TV series nowadays without a few seconds of some drone footage included.

How do Drones help Surveyors

The improvement in technology, especially where High definition cameras and other sensors are concerned. Is having a huge impact, even while the legal complications over drone operation are still being ironed out. 

Small and flexible

For your average surveyor, a drone is a fairly compact piece of kit to carry around. It can store in the back of the car or van and quickly put into action when needed. Drones are light and flexible and can use to survey everything from a large area of land to individual buildings. 

Compared to a helicopter or an aeroplane. A drone is able to fly closer to the building structure and obtain highly accurate images that can use in the evaluation process and report writing. 

Reducing surveying time

If you have to get a ladder out and climb up onto a roof every time you do a property survey. It can be pretty inconvenient not to mention dangerous in many situations. The use of a drone, in this case, makes sense. It can implement in next to no time and will cover large areas of a property in a short period. Taking high-quality images which can save and evaluat later. 

How do Drones help Surveyors

Reducing surveying costs and risks

The speed and accessibility that drones provide also helps to deliver on lowering overall costs. Not only does the survey take less time, there’s often no need for support teams to be included when exteriors are examine. 

Survey crews may also be subject to risks, particularly in remote locations. Drones help with reducing the potential for injury and limiting the size of the team needed. 

How do Drones help Surveyors

Accessing remote locations

One key area where drones are already being used in surveying is with remote locations. If you have a region that has dense undergrowth or marshland. For example, navigating it physically can be difficult and also perilous. A drone easily accesses these areas and, with the latest sensor technology. Various amounts of data can be collected easily and accurately. 

Another mention is the accessibility of buildings and getting into all those nooks and crannies. We can't see unless from above, here a drone comes into its own and the proof is there for everyone to see. Check out this photo - as the roof lights

where quite fragile the surveyor on site needed to see the condition of the guttering surrounding the structure

How do Drones help Surveyors

How do Drones help Surveyors

Types of Drone Sensors

While drones themselves are proving popular with surveyors. They are simply a method of delivering the right technology to the place. Of much greater interest is the growth in different types of sensor that can deploy in a variety of surveying situations.

These currently include How do Drones help Surveyors:

How do Drones help Surveyors

Surveyors, Drones and Regulations

As with any operator, surveyors have to comply with the rules and regulations that surround drone technology. Surveyors need to understand the legislation. As it relates to flying a drone in any urban area like a town or city. That includes having the right permissions to operate a drone commercially through the Civil Aviation Authority. Why not ask us here at HeliDrone Surveys to give you a quote

There’s no doubt that drones have proved an important tool for surveyors in many sectors. They are increasingly use for everything from property investigations to more complicated land surveys. Alongside these lightweight machines. The technology that is develop is also having a huge impact, revolutionising many sectors in the process. 

The UK Drone Laws surrounding drones has always been a little challenging to understand for beginners. Particularly when it comes to what is allowed and what isn’t. Flying below 400 feet and not going within 50 metres of people and private property are just the beginning. When it comes to drone laws...

UK Drone Laws

For experienced operators, particularly those that use drones for work. There’s a continual wait for the government to publish their latest updates. 

New, additional legislation introduced in March 2019 has tighten the law, especially in respect of flying drones near airports. This includes registering devices that are over a certain weight and size.

The growing popularity of drones is all well and good but it doesn’t come without challenges. The mysterious drones that managed to close Gatwick and Heathrow airports last year only serves to remind us that legislation relating. To these devices is still in development and more is yet to come. UK Drone Laws

The current consultation has been going on for some while and the UK is not the only country. That is struggling to get the balance right when it comes to drone law. We already have a number of legal requirements that means drones can’t flow in popular areas such as towns and cities. Without permission while there’s also the prickly issue of public privacy when it comes to drone cameras. 

If you are using drones in your businesses, the March 2019 changes may create problems. Especially if you have to work within the exclusion area surrounding airports. And, if you aren’t sure where your nearest airfield is. You may unwittingly start flying a drone and open yourself up to prosecution. 

What Are The UK Drone Laws Changes?

Any pilot of a drone will now have to make sure they stay outside a 5km perimeter surrounding an airport, an increase from the previous 1km. This includes a 5km by 1 km extension covering the ends and beginnings of runways to protect planes taking off and landing. 

From the 30th November 2019, if you operate a drone that has a weight between 250g and 25Kg. You will need to undertake an online safety test and register with the Civil Aviation Authority before you are allowed to operate it. If you fail to do this after the start date, you could be liable to a fine of up to £1,000 if you are caught. 

UK Drone Laws

The police will have their powers extended from November 2019. This comes mostly in light of drone interference associated with airports but is also related to the potential for criminal activity such as flying drugs and other contraband into prisons. 

If a drone is thought to have been used in an offence. The police can obtain a warrant to search your property for evidence. They can also now give on the spot fines. If you have committed a minor offence such keeping the drone in Visual Line of Sight (VLOS) or refusing to land a drone when asked to do so.

Experienced drone operator

If you are already an experienced drone operator, you’ll have expected these changes and won’t surpris at the new additions to the law. Most understand that flying too close to an airport can be dangerous to flights. Just be aware that the perimeter has now been increased quite considerably. 

Registration and taking the online safety test may give rise to some issues. Neither of these are up and running yet though the CAA says everything will be available by the end of October 2019. How effective this will be remains to be seen. 

UK Drone Laws

The Future of Drone Legislation

This is almost definitely not the end of drone legislation in the UK or across the rest of the world. For instance, it seems likely that an age restriction will come in at some point. There’s also talk of developing an app for professional drone users so that they can keep authorities informed of where they are flying and when. 

There’s no doubt that the use of drones has increased dramatically over the last few years. They are utilis film companies, tourist boards, surveyors. The agriculture industry and even for delivering packages through companies like Amazon. The scope is set to widen as drones become increasingly sophisticated. 

UK Drone Laws

All legislation being introduced has to strike a fine balance between making users. Particularly in respect of commercial drones, more accountable while not impeding their operation. It’s a difficult compromise to achieve and may take a few years yet before it’s fully fleshed out. For drone users, it’s a question of keeping up to date with the latest changes and adjusting behaviour accordingly. 

Please have a look at the Governments: Domestic Threat of Drones

from Defence Committee and Science and Technology Committee, on  Tuesday 11 June 2019

there is also a link to the transcript of the meeting

Case study 2

Brief Case study 2: Photograph and video roof survey of Kingston Hospital, Regency Wing

The Regency wing of Case study 2 Kingston Hospital was built in the 1800s as such the roof requires constant maintenance. Our client direct us to find out the condition of the roof examining the chimney stacks, the pitch and elevation. Ridge tiles, pointing, guttering and general overall condition. Pretty much standard variables in most UAV inspections we complete.
Case study 2 Case study 2 Case study 2

The Survey:

As the area was very sensitive (an operational hospital) with public moving around the site we were directed to the project manager on site. After signing in and completing various administration tasks. Sometimes we are required to provide a H+ S report and operational manual, insurance etc...). We were shown the landing and take off site.  This was well away from the general public and had restricted access. So we were confident that there would be minimal public traffic on site.

The Procedure:

When surveying an area of this building size it is important to find the correct starting and finishing locations in order to proceed in a logical manner around the building. It saves duplication the survey areas. As such we started on the west side of the building with the sun on our backs.  As it was a very clear blue sky day (10mph max wind) we were working in a very contrast environment.
This has particular challenges especially in shadow areas, away from direct sunlight.  Here we must either use auto shutter and ISO settings or manually select them ourselves so that the client will see as much detail of the roof as possible.  Moving around the roof area we concentrate the camera on various inaccessible locations taking care to zoom in on any particular details we feel the surveyor may interest in.  There are generally all sorts of debris and maintenace issues. From plant growth to leaking gutters. Rendering damage to slates missing and pointing issues. Notice the chimney stacks and there overall condition.
Case study 2 Case study 2 Case study 2
Sometimes we don't have any representation from the client (we just get a brief). So we need to make sure we cover all details from every angle so that the surveyors report covers is comprehensive. As the building is so large it takes several batteries to complete the UAV survey and as per usual once we had finished. The sun went in! Overcast days are so much easier for completing photography as you do not encounter such high contrast images.

Case study 2 - Kingston Hospital

Once all stills photography was complete we continued with the video survey.  This is conduct in a 4K resolution as specify the client. The great thing is the the 4k video is almost as good as the stills and the surveys can often see even more detail. They can even get stills from the video to high light to their client any more signs of wear and tear.

Case study 2 Case study 2

The Conclusion:

As mentioned, this was quite a challenging environment in such a public space. During the course of the survey we had encounters with not only the general public. But also hospital management, concern  with privacy of the patients and noise. We had to reassure that no photographs were taken of individuals and we were only concern with the roof structure. Privacy is of paramount importance and we respect all private locations.
If you wish to have more information about our work please go to:

Case Study 1:

London : Tower Bridge Project

The brief Case Study 1: UAV Aerial survey of the property, provide Case Study 1 photographic media to building surveyor to report for prospective new owner.

Case Study 1, Drone Survey Case Study 1, Drone Survey, London


For Helidrone this was an unusual type of property survey to undertake Case Study 1. For a start, the location was fairly unusual being in London, Case Study 1 right on top of the Thames. The location itself was not in any highly restricted flying zone - Class D. However when we contacted NATS they informed us that not stray into R158. This was quite a clear borderline as crossing it meant flying over Tower Bridge and heading along Thames west and into the area of City hall, a high-security zone!


check out this map for more information:

This is also another invaluable resource for UAV flights:

Case Study 1

THE TASK Case Study 1

The task was to photograph and video the roof area and front side of the property which would be hard to see without the use of the drone. This is one of the great flexibilities of using a UAV. Getting access to all those inaccessible locations. How else could you get a good view from the riverside in close up detail of this location? Especially the roof area, which was not straight forward pitched roof. It comprised of various levels and details that could only be seen from acute and birds eye angles that the only a drone can fly to. There where several areas that needed attention such as gutters, pitches and flat roof areas that the on-site surveyor needs more detail of for his report writing to the potential new buyer...

Case Study 1 Case Study 1 Case Study 1

One notable situation was choosing the take-off and landing zones. This area is required to be safe enough to use (with the crew in the vicinity) and as most of the locations that were suitable on the site were surrounded by metal railing and fences there was an issue with recalibrating the compass. Something I always try to do at each location. However with perseverance. We achieved this at the end achieved as well as getting GPS reception, so we were safe to fly.

With the surveyor checking the monitor from the camera feed. We were able to achieve all the desired locations for him to write his final report, job did take a look at our other case studies:

Case Study 1 Case Study 1 Case Study 1


Drone regulations flying are highly regulated in the UK and there are laws and guidelines in place. The new legislation is due to take effect in 2019. Some drone laws have been in place since 2017. These amend the existing air navigation order of 2016.

UAV operators in the UK are ban from exceeding 400 feet at and from using a drone within a radius of 1 kilometer of an airport. Contravention of this law can mean unlimited fines and up to five years in prison. 

Department of Transport Regulations

Moreover, in 2018 the Department of Transport implemented new rules whereby if drones run to over 250 grams in weight. Drone pilots are required to register their drones with the CAA and pass a series of exams and practical tests in order to operate safely and legally. This is known as the PfCO, Permission for Commercial Operations. Those who fail to register and pass the exams may fine up to £1000 for commercially using drones. The new laws form part of the government's new industrial strategy and aim to plan for the expansion of drone use throughout the UK. Some exemptions for some UK airports may deem necessary and further information on this is still to confirm. The new drone bill features several new laws that are due to come into effect but have not yet announce. 

To minimize the impact on model aircraft associations the government is a point to examples of the positive use of drones. For example, to inspect Hinckley's point nuclear power station, hospitals and public buildings. In other examples drones are also used to reduce costs of wind turbine inspections 50%. So, the potential for drone use within industry and business is only starting to realize. It is estimate PwC that uptake in the use of drones could add over £1 billion to the UK economy in the next 15 years. So drone regulation is important and is forcing the industry to become much more professional. 

Increased safety in drone use

Department of Transport expects the new rules to increase safety when protecting the public whilst also ensuring the increase benefits of drones within the industry. Regulations now cover remote operators of drones as well as a pilot in charge, or SUA operator. Existing regulations require commercial drone pilots to update their operations manual with appropriate information. Any applications or renewals which are not update will cancel.

International Drone Regulation

Regulations bring the UK in line with other international laws for drones and focus directly on the reduction of unsafe operation, public safety, and protection. As well as recognizing the positive impact of drone use with industry and commerce. What is important is that if you’re planning a drone survey it’s vital that your drone pilot is register and competent in the use of drones. You should check that they have the appropriate training and certification (PfCO) to ensure that you are working with a professional drone operator. Otherwise, you may find yourself falling foul of the law which inevitably will impact your business negatively. For more information on the drone, regulations contact us today. 

Recent Drone Issues

As of today 23rdDecember 2018. We are bombard with the recent news of illegal drone activity over the UK’s Gatwick airport. At this stage, we are not sure who is operating the drones within the restrict airspace. But it highlights the massive security and safety issues associated with drone operations and how we can all keep this industry safe and regular. Over the next few months, we will see how the government reacts to this story. Who is behind it and the legislations that will ensue. As we’re sure that something will happen to try and stop this debacle happening again. So in the meantime, watch the skies, drone safe and best for 2019!

House buyers and Sellers

Boost Property sales has had a bumpy ride in the last decade. House buyers are more choosy than ever before about how they spend their hard earned cash on their biggest and most personal purchase. It’s a competitive market out there and some areas are even more cut throat than others. So, just how do you get that competitive edge when you’re selling properties?

How drones can boost property sales and your bottom line

One way of bringing a new vision to real estate is by literally. Giving buyers a new perspective on properties through the use of drone photography and video. Drones are an excellent way of giving buyers a bird’s eye view of a property. They allow you to hover over the property and take a video or multiple imagery showing the true layout of the location.

Boost Property sales

Using drones to take photographs and video enables potential buyers to get a really clear view of the property from above. It can show the property in its best light and give a clear picture of the layout of the gardens. Property and outbuildings plus its location in relation to roads and key infrastructure. The aim of estate agents is to draw in buyers and to engage and hold. Their attention for long enough for them to study the property and fall in love with it. Viewing a property from above is the perfect way to do that. Drone photography brings a unique perspective to a property viewing and enables people to hone in on particular features. And see if that property fits their needs from the outside in.

Boost Property sales Boost Property sales

Get the Professionals in...

A professional drone surveyor can show a property in its best light. And ensure that a professional video is created showing a smooth flow around the property. A well recorded and edited video can increase online engagement. Creating a buzz about the property. Getting people talking and allowing people to see a side of the property that would not. Otherwise be possible can mean the difference to getting more successful viewings...

.Boost Property sales

Drones are literally taking property real estate to a new high. More and more people look forward to seeing new properties on the market purely. Because they’re able to get a view from on high. Images and video create much better engagement. Getting people talking sharing, tweeting and liking your properties. Sales of drones have increased 40% over in 2017 according to Gartner research. However, there are still only a small number of specialist drone operators. Who have the experience to provide a really high quality video and photographic imagery.

Boost Property sales

Featuring the property

Showcasing a property from above can show stunning features which would not otherwise be seen. However, you must ensure you employ a professional as drone operator as regulation is a minefield of health, safety and legal regulations. So make sure that your drone video is not only professional but showcases what you have to offer. With HeliDrone you'll get the extra content required. Make sure your on site during the survey so that you can point out any features and plus points of the property. Tell your neighbours as well. As you don't want them getting any surprises! So boost your bottomline and get buyers in viewing your rental. And sales portfolio with a drone property video and photography service.

In recent years, drones have been used in a wide variety of manners. Not only for recreational use, but across the fields of surveying, construction, commerce, science and research. As new technology often does, drones are change the way people work in these fields. Providing many positive improvements on the way certain jobs can do. One of the many upsides of drone technology is how much more environmentally friendly they can make certain jobs. And how their use has an overall positive impact on the environment.

How Do Drones Have A Positive Impact On The Environment?

In our last post, we looked at the use of drones in the construction industry. But the effect of drones on the environment isn’t limited to only this sector. Most drones are powered by electricity or solar power. And as such have a much smaller carbon footprint than more traditional alternatives. Let’s look further at a few different ways drones are improving the overall carbon footprint on the environment across a variety of sectors.

How are drones improving the carbon footprint on the planet?

Humanity’s carbon footprint and it’s adverse effect on the planet is a multi-faceted discussion which is not easily cover in one post. We want to highlight some general ways in which drone technology is helping to improve the carbon footprint on the planet. As you can see in this graphic from the RICS. Carbon emissions are estimated to be at an all-time high. We should work collectively to improve this as many ways as possible.

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1) In the construction industry.

On construction sites, drones are primarily use for quick and easy surveys. Surveying hard to reach areas, and for transporting small items. This means construction sites have the ability to remove the need for or use less scaffolding, cherry pickers, and delivery trucks. All of this means there is far less equipment use to set up and maintain a building site. As well as no gas emissions from trucks that may otherwise use onsite.

2) Use for ecological surveys.

When scientists are trying to make the most of their ecological surveys and need to measure animal populations. Drones are now making huge improvements to effectiveness of their studies and evidence gathering. Drone technology enables them to complete more in-depth and accurate aerial surveys. So that they can always keep animal welfare at the front of their minds. This also means less equipment and therefore emissions use to reach harder to access areas. As drones have a far greater ability to do this.

3) In the agriculture industry.

Drone use in the agriculture industry is increas recently. They’re use in this sector in a huge variety of ways such as monitoring livestock. Providing details on crop health, spraying plants and in some cases even creating 3D images for future upgrades. With factory farming having a negative impact on the environment. It makes a positive difference to use drones in as many ways as possible in the agriculture industry to reduce emissions. From some of the huge carbon emitting machines traditionally use on farms.

4) For renewable energy inspections.

Renewable energy is the way of the future, and drones are a main helping factor in the running of renewable energy projects the world round. From surveying sites to land mapping, drones provide key information for those setting up renewable energy sites. Surveying solar panels is a costly and time consuming job in the traditional manner as well. But with drones and thermal mapping they quickly become much easier to survey and maintain. The initial setup and maintenance of these sites has a major positive impact on the environmental health of the planet. And drones play a large part in this.

Drones aerial photography, drone aerial surveys, drone photographic surveys, one photography, drone aerial photography uk, drone aerial surveys uk, drone photography uk, drone photographic surveys uk

Drones help improve our carbon footprint

In short, the effect that drones have on the environment are important to pay attention to. We need to do everything within our power to improve our impact on the environment. And drones can help improve superfluous carbon-emissions within many industries.

Here at HeliDrone Surveys. We specialise in aerial photography and videos for surveyors. Get in touch with us to see how we can improve your project’s carbon footprint with our drone technology.

We specialise in 3 reasons aerial drone photographic and video surveys using drone technology for our clients. The vast majority of our clients here at Helidrone Surveys are surveying businesses and charter surveyors working in the construction and real estate industries. Now that the capability is more readily available. There are many benefits to using drone technology for jobs in these sectors, including:

Though we know all of the benefits to using aerial drone surveys for your sites. We were very interested to see this report by DroneDeploy which shows that use of drones is growing most quickly in the construction sector. Drone growth year on year in the construction industry is rising the highest at a rate of 239%.

3 Reasons Aerial Drone Surveys Are Increasing In The Construction Industry

Initially drones were used on construction sites to provide an aerial snapshot of how sites were progressing once every couple of months. But now the data and information they provide is much more valuable to surveyors and project managers. They make it possible for problems to be spotted early on. Keep track of workers, and even transport goods if needed.

drone aerial photography, drone aerial surveys, drone photographic surveys, one photography, drone aerial photography uk, drone aerial surveys uk, drone photography uk, drone photographic surveys uk

Why is 3 reasons aerial drone use in the industry increasing at such a rapid pace?

When new technology makes such a big difference to our lives. Its use takes off very quickly and it instantly becomes something we cannot live without. Here’s a look at the top three reasons aerial drone surveys are increasing so quickly in the construction sector:

1) They provide a variety solutions

Drone photographs and aerial surveys aren’t just a one trick pony. They have many uses that make life faster and easier for those working in the construction industry. They can be used to progress tracking and communication, for pre-construction and site planning. For quality control and assurance, and to help asses job site risks.

2) Improvements to timescales

Aerial photography has vastly decreased the amount of initial work needing done during a project’s pre-construction and site planning phases. They have the ability to collect data and report on it in a fast and efficient manner. Which in turn means work can be completed much faster. Being able to complete work on a smaller timescale also means it can be completed on a smaller budget! Surveyors and contractors who are able to bid for projects where they can highlight taking less time and money. Than other companies are starting to win out on more projects than their competitors.

3) Better site inspections

Using drones in a variety of ways from pre-construction site planning to surveying hard to reach areas means surveyors now have the ability to carry out more thorough. And safer site inspections than they could previously. This also means that it’s possible to reduce the amount of dangers and safety hazards on worksites. Such as extra scaffolding and cherry pickers. Drones can easily hover over a location that is high risk for construction workers. And as such can create safer workplace conditions in areas that are hard to reach.

drone aerial photography, drone aerial surveys, drone photographic surveys, one photography, drone aerial photography uk, drone aerial surveys uk, drone photography uk, drone photographic surveys uk

Shaping the way of the future

If this report is anything to go from, there will be a continued rise in the many ways in which aerial photography. And drones are used in the construction industry. As Douglas Adams said, ‘we are stuck with technology when all we really want is just stuff that works. Aerial photogaphy and surveying really works and makes a valuable difference in the construction industry. As proven by the statistics in the report.

At Helidrone Surveys, we work with many surveying businesses within the construction industry. And would be happy to hear from you about any of your drone needs. Please drop us a line anytime and we’ll be in touch for a no-obligation chat about what we can do for you.

Sometimes I get to photograph and film in some of the best locations in London. Today’s was especially special as it’s such an exclusive address with views that cost an absolute fortune! I was here at a clients request to conduct uav aerial photography survey


So I had an opportunity to get some great showreel footage of the #Thames and #london best views across the river including #TowerBridge #CityHall and the #Victoriadock to name but a few. #dronephotography #dronestagram #roofsurveys #RICS #surveyor #dronesurveying #dronesurvey #djiinspire1 #helidrone

If you have any queries about how we can help you on a drone survey with photography or video work. Please contact us via the LinkedIn connection site click on this link:

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any questions you have we'll do our best to answer you. Don't forget we can travel anywhere in the UK.

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