4.1. Basic rules for drone operations

Fragmentation of internal instructions and procedures can make it difficult to ensure that the main priorities for safe drone operations reach everybody. An internal document with the main rules and responsibilities and a list of basic dos and don’ts can help to ensure that the key points are not lost in a fractured set of documents.

The European (EASA) and the American civil aviation authorities (FAA) have produced summaries of drone regulations which can serve as reference. While the content should be known to all certified pilots, it might be not known by others involved in drone operation decision making.


  1. Staff is unaware of internal regulations or basic legal limitations of drone operations.

Audit Steps

  1. Review existing procedures for clarity regarding roles and responsibilities during flight operations.
  2. Review existing procedures for clarity regarding authorization requirements for missions.
  3. Review existing procedures for a set of clear and simple dos and don’ts in drone operations.
  4. Interview pilots, flightcrew and staff managing drone operations to evaluate their awareness of internal procedures.
  5. Validate that contract pilots receive the full set of relevant internal documents and are contractually bound to apply them.


drone audit program index