FAA to Begin Offering Instrument Rating to Drone Pilots

FAA Licensed Commercial Drone Pilot

In a move expected to generate a lot of excitement in the drone pilot community, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced Thursday that it will begin offering an Instrument Rating for pilots of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

According to an FAA spokesperson, “The NTSB has recently expressed concern that failure to train drone pilots in instrument conditions will lead to more in-flight accidents with trees, birds, and even other drones.”

Allen Marks, an FAA Licensed Commercial Drone Pilot with over 100 hours experience as Pilot-in-Command of unmanned aircraft says, “It’s about time. The rest of the pilot community doesn’t take us very seriously and I think this will finally change that.”

A person who applies for an Instrument Drone Pilot Certificate must:
– Hold a current Remote Pilot Certificate
– Be in possession of a certified, FAA-issued drone pilot safety vest

In order to obtain the Instrument Drone Pilot Certificate, you must have logged the following:
– At least 20 hours PIC at the controls of unmanned aircraft greater
than 2 lbs.
– A total of 5 hours of actual remote pilot instrument flight training
from an authorized drone pilot flight instructor
– An additional 5 hours of actual or simulated UAV instrument time

Interested drone pilots should contact their local flight school for more information.