Getting a drone is exciting, but they can be dangerous pieces of machinery when misused, or if there is ever an accident. We also (mostly) fly our drones outside in all kinds of temperatures, leaving us regularly exposed to the elements. These are some of the items that are always found in the UAVHIB Flight Safety Box.
1. First Aid Kit
A good first aid kit is essential to carry around with you when using drones Don't scrimp either and just get a pocket one; you'll be glad of it if there is ever a catastrophe. St John Ambulance does a variety of first aid kits including a travel one, but if you have space, it may be worth getting a workplace kit.
2. Fire Extinguisher
You should always try and carry a small portable fire extinguisher with you when flying your drone. The LiPo batteries used in drones are quite volatile and can be explosive, so if this ever happens, it's best to be prepared.
3. Fire Blanket
A fire blanket makes a good backup if your fire extinguisher fails to work. Also, if you travel abroad, you won't be able to take your fire extinguisher on the plane so having a fire blanket as a backup is a necessity.
4. Landing Mat
A good landing mat could mean the difference between you being able to take off or not. If the grass is long where you are trying to take off, you may end up getting unwanted dirt of morning dew on the lens. Get yourself a good-sized landing mat that is big enough for your aircraft. A small pop up one that you can't peg down won't be of much use in a slight breeze.
It's also an excellent opportunity to show off some branding and really make yourself stand out.
Cones are useful if you need to start to cordon your take off and landing point off, to stop people not under your control entering the vicinity. Combined with cordon tape, you can quickly set up an effective barrier.
6. Cordon Tape
As mentioned above, keep a roll of cordon tape in your box when you feel the need to set up a temporary barrier when flying your drone.
7. Warm dry clothing
Although it may be warm when you leave the house, when you are out in the field, and a steady breeze gets you, it can get quite cold. Having some warm clothing in your flight pack, especially in winter can be a lifesaver.
Warm dry clothing also will be very beneficial if you are caught unaware in the rain and need to get out of your sopping wet clothes after trying to get your drone packed away.
8. High Visibility Vests
Sometimes high visibility vests are a requirement by local authorities and construction sites when operating, so it's a good idea to have some spare ones in your flight pack. It's also an excellent opportunity to have some branded vests - nothing like a bit of self-promotion!
9. Water & Snacks
Always keep plenty of bottles of water in the back of your car/truck, but also keep a few in your flight box for an emergency. It can be a real inconvenience if you've parked a long way from your take off and landing point and forgot to grab a bottle.
High protein bars with long use by date are also worth stashing in your flight box. When you're working remotely, it's good to have something to give you a quick energy boost to keep you going.
An anemometer is used to measure the wind speed locally. You may have checked the weather reports, and they all say the wind speeds are fine, but things could be completely different on top of an open hill or down the valley.
Don't get caught out and have your drone fly away, if the wind feels unusually strong, measure it and keep everyone safe.
11. LiPo Bags
If you're going to be running through and travelling a lot with drone batteries, you may want to invest in some LiPo bags to securely hold your batteries. In the event of a battery setting on fire during transport, at least the bags are another barrier to containing the fire.
Keep a couple of spare bags in your flight box; if you do forget to bring bags with your aircraft, at least you know you can store some of your discharged batteries safely.
These are just some of the items that we at UAVHUB carry in our Flight Safety Box. Occasionally we may need to travel light and only back a Fire blanket and a First aid kit as a minimum, but our box is ready to go for 90% of our aerial shoots.
Is there anything in your flight safety box that we haven't included on the list? Let us know in the comments!