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Old January 2nd, 2015, 01:55 PM   #16
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

To fairly comment we still really need to know the detail of what happened in the minutes before the arrest, but on the basis of what that video shows us, the policeman's initial comment about "final request" does seem to imply the drone operator had been told to desist from filming previous to the videoed incident of the actual arrest, and we can only assume he didn't comply promptly. Possibly even landed, relocated, and took off again? (Hence the policeman coming across the field?)
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Originally Posted by Mark Dobson View Post
So I think the pilot was operating in a safe and legal manner technically and that he would have avoided any confrontation if he had complied .........

I'm really not a fan of ambulance chasing photojournalism, especially ....... but think that the aerial photographer was probably within his rights.
He may well have been operating in a safe and legal manner initially, but the moment he failed to promptly comply with the initial request to land he was no longer acting legally.

I go back to what I put earlier - you may have a valid car driving licence, you may have a roadworthy and taxed etc car, you may be driving within the speed limit, but if a policeman tells you "you can't drive down that road", you're breaking the law if you do so.
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Old January 2nd, 2015, 01:58 PM   #17
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

I'm also BNUC-S qualified, but if a police officer requested that I land I'm pretty sure I'd land first, argue later.

I can't think of a single situation where you can have a police officer ask/request/command you to do something (or not do something) and you choosing to ignore them, argue with them or simply not comply would make the situation any better. They aren't going to go away.

Like it or not, if you resist their requests you're only going to make them more determined and whether you are right or wrong will be irrelevant until much later. You can be sure of your rights 'till the cows come home, in the end they can arrest you, confiscate your gear and then (probably) let you go with no charge with seemingly no consequences for the arresting officer.

The vast majority of police officers aren't going to ask you to do something (or not do something) for absolutely no reason, and you may not be aware of all the circumstances until later, if ever.
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Old January 3rd, 2015, 08:01 AM   #18
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

Good professionals are not flying alone. You can achieve much better pictures when you separate the pilot from camera operator. Having a second person "on the ground" increasses dramatically the safety.
There are so many things that can happen - so its allways much more safe to have someone on the side. Someone who can even speak with an asking policeman or security, hold the childs or animals away and secure your landing area.
And as a professional journalist ist the first what you do: showing you journalist identification and speaking with the police on the place.
Remember - pilot always bears full responsibility. He ,ust be prepared to safely resolve even this situation.
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Old January 5th, 2015, 08:15 AM   #19
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

As to the morality of using drones to shoot this sort of news footage, I really can't see how it's any worse or different trying to shoot it from the air than the ground.
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Old January 5th, 2015, 11:49 AM   #20
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

I agree, except that the police would cordon off a scene such as the one described, which would prevent photographers getting in close. Aerial footage though is not constricted by cordons and could well create moral conflicts and confrontation that the police may wish to avoid.

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Old January 5th, 2015, 05:49 PM   #21
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

As Roger says - but also that a drone is very obvious to everybody on the ground - and therefore far from tactful to people who may have just suffered a very painful tragedy.
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Old January 7th, 2015, 11:13 AM   #22
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

And why shouldn't people do what the police tell them to, they're paid to keep the peace after all? Except for those engaged in nefarious activities, they're not out to "get us". It's a crying shame so many children in this country are not brought up to respect the police like they used to be!

The trouble is, nobody is prepared to take responsibility for their own actions any more, it's always somebody else's fault.

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Old January 7th, 2015, 01:39 PM   #23
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

people should do what the police say when it's a lawful order, they might not be' out to get' people but unfortunately, they are not very well informed about the 'law' which is their job to uphold.
see the vid;

:-)
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Old January 8th, 2015, 01:50 AM   #24
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

Sure, many of us have come across ill informed Police or Civil Officers whilst carrying out our trade and sure the law is clearly on our side when it comes to filming on the street (That's here is the UK ) but the journalist (dronalist?) arrested for breaching the peace whilst attempting to get overhead shots of a burnt caravan in which people have just died is a different scenario.

Normally a situation like this would be covered by a couple of GV's, a statement from the Police Officer or Fire commander in charge and maybe a couple of vox pop interviews.

Now it could be that he was 'within his rights' and was qualified to operate his drone commercially, but the availability and capability of these drones might require a clarification of the laws that govern journalists reporting from incidents such as this.

Either way to comply with his CAA certification the operator should have been operating on a strict 'line of sight' basis and really should not have been working on his own. The training I have carried out for the BNUC
( Basic National Unmanned Aircraft Systems Certificate) emphasises the importance of working as part of a team. Had this operator been working with another crew member they would have been able to negotiate with the police leaving the pilot to concentrate of his job and to bring the aircraft down safely.

His take off and landing area should also have been clearly laid out with visible barriers. The pilot is legally required to fully document this incident and this will become a part of the review when he applies to have his licence extended.

If a fully trained operator does not work in the correct manner it will damage the overall perception toward the responsible use of UAS and this could well result in a kneejerk response towards introducing highly restrictive legislation that will affect both amateur and professional operators.
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Old January 8th, 2015, 02:33 AM   #25
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Cantwell View Post
people should do what the police say when it's a lawful order, they might not be' out to get' people but unfortunately, they are not very well informed about the 'law' which is their job to uphold.
These possibly seem to be more like special constables, part time volunteers, than full time police (assuming they're actually real). I've never seen a cop with their hands in their pockets like that when dealing with a possible offender, they tend to be all business.
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Old January 8th, 2015, 07:02 AM   #26
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

I don't see any connection between the drone incident and the video that Rob linked to. The drone incident was related to a major incident and crossed the line between journalistic coverage and decency and respect. It was also policed by an experienced officer who had requested previously that the operator stopped filming.

The second video from 8 years ago was of someone in their garden filming two very young officers on patrol, with no other purpose than to draw attention to himself and provoke them. There was clearly no point other than gaining a reaction in an attempt to make them look silly. They foolishly rose to the bait with no knowledge of his civil rights and on making enquiries, walked away without further comment. The videographer took delight in quoting a piece of widely circulated internet information to use in his anti police video. I think it shows him up in a worse light than the young police officers.

This was filmed not long after the London bombings, around the time that there had been an arrest in London of a cameraman who was suspected of taking pictures for possible terrorist use. It was proved that he was taking tourist pictures as a visitor and no prosecution was made. As a result, there was a wide internet circulation of a section of a legal document telling people what the police could or could not do when someone was filming. this was followed by several instances of failed arrests as people proceeded to test it. Police are also now aware of the rights of photographers and videographers as can be seen by the number of people filming the police during demonstrations. At the time this video was taken, the two officers are unlikely to have been familiar with the law on this particular subject.

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Old January 8th, 2015, 07:31 AM   #27
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Dobson View Post
The training I have carried out for the BNUC
( Basic National Unmanned Aircraft Systems Certificate) emphasises the importance of working as part of a team. Had this operator been working with another crew member they would have been able to negotiate with the police leaving the pilot to concentrate of his job and to bring the aircraft down safely.
That is the most important point.
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Old January 8th, 2015, 07:37 AM   #28
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

there isn't any connection, I was merely responding to Dave's statement that "people should do what the police tell them to do" and used that particular vid to illustrate that people dont have to do what the police tell them to do 'all of the time', just because they have a badge and uniform doesnt mean they can make up laws to cover their inexperience or ignorance of the law.
I'm all for good even handed policing but the police must be aware and obey the law too. The internet is littered with incidents of police officers involved in such behaviour.

Getting back on topic, Mr. Mitchell apparently is intending to sue the police for false arrest.

Drone photographer to sue police for false imprisonment after arrest at scene of Surrey caravan fire | Press Gazette
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Old January 8th, 2015, 09:03 AM   #29
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

Hii Rob, my post wasn't intended in any way as a rebuff to you or your post, merely an observation.

In the face of a difficult and frequently challenging job, the police are often faced with people who show a total lack of any respect for the law and go out of their way to goad and try to embarrass the police with pointless time wasting such as this video. The police are of course perfectly able to make mistakes and get things wrong, particularly when needing to make instant judgement calls. When these mistakes have detrimental consequences, then they need to be brought to task,

I hope that the drone pilot's appeal fails and that he takes responsibility for his lack of respect for those who have lost their loved ones and the repeated requests of the police.

Roger
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Old January 8th, 2015, 11:12 AM   #30
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Re: Drone Pilot arrested whilst drone in air

I tweeted this link at Consumer Electronics Show attendees. I had a drone company handle in the tweet so as to draw more eyes.I don't know anything about these folks besides seeing them on twitter.

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