Review - UK CAA PFCO Drone Training Course - Completed

Review - UK CAA PFCO Drone Training Course - Completed

So, I am excited to announce that I have completed my Drone CAA PFCO training course and passed.  This means that I can now fly drones for commercial operations.  I can also provide very informed advice to our customers regarding which drones would be suitable for recreational, commercial use and all the 'do's and don'ts'.

I am pleased to be able to offer the PFCO courses which can be booked through us and even pay over 6 months interest free.  Available in a number of locations

Here is my review:

Online Training

  • Approx 10hrs of online training material, slides and presentaions
  • Online quiz after each module
  • 1 final revision quiz at the end of the online training course

This was great because you can study in your own time and speed, I was a little tight for time and did this in 1 week, but I do not recommend this!

Classroom training

The second part of the course was conducted at a hotel for more teaching, the theory test, flight training, flight test, scenario training, risk assessments, ops manual and more.  I knew this was going to be a packed 3 days of learning!

Day 1

The morning consisted of a thorough recap of all the information that we had learnt from the online course followed by a quiz, just to make sure we had fully understood everything we needed to know and to make sure we were competent at flying drones safely.

Lunch

Then the theory test!  This test is a 1hr long multiple choice paper. It was a bit tricky in places, but as long as you have made sure you listen, read and digest all the online training you should be fine.

The test was marked whilst we went on a break and we were given the results that day which was great!  We all passed too.

After the results were given, it was time to get out with the drones for some flight training where we were assessed on our flying ability.  Not a formal test, it was  just to gauge our level of flying.  We all used approx 2 batteries before it was home time.

Day 2

As the test has been completed, things felt a little more relaxed, as this was one less worry.  I felt doing the course this way round is beneficial.

The day started off with more flight training and safety procedures.

After this,  it was back to the classroom to go through insurance, reviewing our ops manuals and procedures.

Lunch

After lunch we were given a couple of real life job scenarios that we had to plan, risk assess, point out potential hazards etc.  For this we worked in groups and reviewed after.  This was very useful to see how to run a job from start to finish.

Later on after reviewing the risk assessments, I was taken out with the drone to perform my PFCO Flight Assessment. So here we go.  The test consisted of many different maneuvers to show that I was confident in flying the drone in 'P' (GPS) mode.  I then had to fly in 'ATTI' mode which is far more difficult and the wind had decided to blow too!  More maneuvers in this mode followed by a couple of test incursions to make sure I knew what to do in an emergency.  Once I had landed, it was time for some on the spot test questions!  And yay - I passed!

Day 3

The morning was relaxed as I had finished the assessment stages, some of the other members on the course were carrying out their flight tests so I used this time for a bit of flying and then reviewing all that we had completed so far.

In the afternoon, we were tested on our Ops manual with a quiz, to make sure we were familiar with all our procedures, operating conditions and drones specifications.  We were then helped to write the ops manual so this was a good chance to check over everything as well.

And that is it!  Wow - this was very intense, with steep learning curves!  I now have my PFCO and raring to get going.

Conclusion

This course was handled very well, all the online and classroom material was made available for later reference along with a list of useful apps etc to make the ops even easier. 

We are pleased to be offering this course to anyone that is interested, it can booked via Crooked Imaging on 01634 715929.

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