Record Keeping

Sara Hurley launches NHS survey on record keeping standards ...

You must maintain up-to-date records of your activities as a UAS Operator. It is up to you whether you use paper, spreadsheets or a dedicated UAS Operator Management app or system. The important thing is to make sure you keep records and that they are up-to-date.

The records you will need to maintain are as follows: –

Client Operation Files

You should have a file or folder for each and every commercial operation. The records you would create and keep in this file would be as a minimum…

  • Pre-Site Assessment Form (with supporting printouts etc.)
  • On-Site Assessment Form
  • Risk Assessment (Standing and Dynamic or Site Assessments)

You may well decide to have additional forms and documentation in each file. It is common for SUA Operators to use forms such as Client Questionnaire, Crew Call Sheets, Property Owners Permission Form etc. The choice is yours, whatever suits you and your business.

Pilot and Aircraft Logs

It is a legal requirement for you to maintain both pilot and aircraft logs. These are often combined into a single electronic log which allows sorting and totals on individual pilots and/or aircraft. Many Operators use a tablet or phone-based apps, many of which draw fight data from the automatically maintained UAS logs. A combined logbook will look something like this:

Other Logs

Although not a legal requirement, you should keep a Maintenance Log. This allows you to record in reasonable detail any work done to maintain or repair your UAS and associated equipment. You also should record all software and firmware updates, together with the subsequent flight tests, which would also be recorded in the Pilot and Aircraft log(s). 

We also recommend that you keep an Incident Log. You would record any incident in this and cross-reference to the other logs as appropriate. Finally, if you are operating a UAS which does not have self-logging intelligent battery packs you should maintain a Battery Log to keep track of usage and performance of each of your battery packs.