Drone light shows hold an undeniable charm, enchanting audiences with their spellbinding performances. However, amid the excitement, a common concern crops up: Can you actually fly drone shows near an airport? Many assume that due to their event’s proximity to an airport, hosting a drone light show is out of the question. Let’s delve into this topic, exploring whether it’s feasible!

Drone Light Show near London City Airport

Understanding Airspace Entitlement

Contrary to popular belief, airspace isn’t the exclusive domain of commercial airliners. Anybody is equally entitled to access and use the airspace, provided they adhere to regulations and safety protocols. Air Traffic Control (ATC) do not own the airspace around them, they are there to coordinate it so that everyone flying in it is safe.

This means that flying drone shows near airports is indeed feasible, with proper planning and communication.

Effective Communication is Key

The key to conducting drone shows near airports hinges on effective communication. It is essential to establish a dialogue with the airport authorities, enabling us to provide comprehensive details of our operation, such as flight schedules and locations. This facilitates coordination and helps mitigate potential risks for all airspace users.

While sometimes this may require a longer lead time, this proactive approach ensures compliance and safety for all airspace users. It does mean though, that a drone light show in close proximity to an airport is absolutely possible!

Staying in Radio Communication

Plane CockpitMaintaining radio communication with the Air Traffic Service Unit (ATSU) is a fundamental aspect of flying drone shows near airports. This real-time interaction enables seamless coordination between drone operators and manned aircraft, minimising the likelihood of infringements and ensuring operational harmony.

A Flight Radiotelephony Operator’s Licence (FRTOL) is a legal requirement which ensures the correct use of terminology and procedures. Any of our flight crew operating a drone light show near an airport will possess a valid FRTOL. Our expert team of pilots are not only trained to fly drone swarms, but many of them fly planes as well! This understanding and respect for manned aviation helps us appreciate and manage the risks.

A Testimonial from the Skies

At FlightShows, we’ve experienced firsthand the compatibility of drone shows with airport operations. One of our test sites is an active airfield! We also have a memorable snippet of a plane departing from Heathrow flying behind one of our shows, serving as a testament to the harmonious coexistence of drones and manned aircraft.

In Conclusion

The prospect of flying drone light shows near airports is not only feasible but also well within regulatory parameters. By prioritising effective communication, maintaining radio contact, and adhering to safe procedures, our aerial displays can safely operate alongside airport operations.

Ready to take your event to new heights with a captivating drone show? Contact us today to explore the endless possibilities of FlightShows and experience the magic of aerial entertainment, even near airports!

If you found this post informative, be sure to explore our other blog post, “Busting Common Myths: Why You CAN Have a Drone Light Show,” where we delve into debunking other misconceptions surrounding where drone light shows can be held.

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