The FAA estimates 7 million drones to be buzzing around in the airspace system by 2020. As a pilot, there are understandable concerns about what it means to have so many people sharing the same airspace. Having functioned as both an airplane pilot and a drone pilot, I've gained some takeaways from both sides that help dovetail the airspace use a little better. Whether you embrace these additions to the sky or not, let's look at some of the ways that drone flight can affect you as an airplane pilot.
The highest a drone can be legally flown is 400 feet above the ground. For a drone, 400 feet is WAY up there. If I were flying a hobby drone that high, I would feel like I lost it. It takes equipment like my Phantom 4 with a good bit of automation to confidently fly near that height because of the first person view camera and GPS stabilization. Plus, the same automation that lets me fly that high also automatically stops gaining altitude at 400 feet and gives an audible "maximum flight altitude reached" warning.
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