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Education takes flight before the drones

Posted at 5:45 PM, Dec 23, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-23 19:45:10-05

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Since requiring registration on Monday, the Federal Aviation Administration reports approximately 45,000 drones have been registered in just a few days and this is only the beginning. They've been flying off the shelves and landing under many Christmas trees. The problem is, many people have no idea how to operate them. 

That's where Airborne Precision Imaging Arizona has stepped in to make sure no drone-user is hovering above the law. On Wednesday, the company held its first-ever Intro to Drone Safe Flying Class. 

The class begins with taking notes, instead of taking flight with instructor David Iadevaia. The fun of flying happens after a crash-course in safety and FAA regulations/restrictions. That's because Iadevaia has seen the popularity of drones rise, so too with the concerns. 

"I've... seen irresponsible people using them, which is probably why we have all these regulations at this time, " said Iadevia. "But, I think education is the way to help mitigate some of the problems."

That's why Jeff Volker came by, saying he wanted to learn more about the FAA and the requirements. 

"I think if you pick-up your drone at the hobby shop, they don't explain the rules, you know?" Volker said. "They take you're credit card and then send you out the door."
 
Volker thinks that anyone operating a drone should attend a class like this. 
 
"Doing almost anything is an opportunity to get hurt or to hurt someone else, so - but, I think if you have some common sense and play by the rules it can be a good thing," Volker explained. 
 
Iadevia says, he thinks interest in the new class will fly even higher after Christmas comes. After all, the FAA is expecting more than 1 million drones to be given as gifts this holiday season. 
 
"Hopefully, the word will get out and I'll do this around town where-ever it's necessary," Iadevia said.
 
Iadevia told KGUN9, the class isn't offered on a regular basis. Instead, he will offer the classes based on demand.
 
You need to register before the class by calling or texting (520) 827-7877 or email: apiaz123@yahoo.com with your name and contact info. The class costs $25 payable by cash or check when you attend the class.
 
Click here for more info.