Belfast, UK: Andrew Hamilton, Civil Aviation Authority Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) lead is to leave the CAA to become Director of Operations at leading drone company Crowded Space Drones.
Andrew has been involved in drones for nearly 10 years and whilst an Inspector with Devon & Cornwall Constabulary, founding the first ever 24 hour UK Police Drone Unit which now has over 50 Police Officers trained as pilots.
Following this, Andrew joined the Civil Aviation Authority, transforming their systems and processes to the benefit of the wider drone industry.
Under his leadership at the Civil Aviation Authority, Andrew has overseen the approval of drone delivery programs, such as the delivery of medical equipment to the Isle of Wight to assist with the Coronavirus response. He also assisted in the roll out of Drone & Model Aircraft Registration and Education Scheme (DMARES) and significant improvements to the process of applying and renewing commercial drone permissions.
Crowded Space Drones are a specialist drone services company who hold a unique special permission from the Civil Aviation Authority to safely fly as close as five metres from uncontrolled persons.
Working in specialist areas such as inspections, major events, counter terrorism, television filming and surveying, with clients includes Walmart, Live Nation, Metropolitan Police, Wimbledon, BBC, Arsenal FC and the Ministry of Defence. The company also had a role in the UK response to the Gatwick & Heathrow drone attacks, remaining onsite for nearly 5 months.
Andrew McQuillan, Director of Crowded Space Drones, commented: “Our entire team is absolutely thrilled to have Andrew Hamilton join us to lead our flight operations, there is simply no one in the United Kingdom who has more knowledge, experience and know how in all aspects of the drone industry. This will be a massive benefit to our clients and also help us ensure we are the safest drone operator.
Andrew joins the team as part of our ongoing growth plan, which includes capital investment and the creation of approximately 20 new jobs for Pilots, Flight Crew and other support roles involved in Surveying and Inspection over the next 12 months.”
Crowded Space Drones will be developing new services to assist further develop the drone industry in the United Kingdom. Andrew Hamilton explained this further: “The existing UK drone regulations will soon change when the new EU regulations come into force towards the end of the year. This will see some fundamental changes as to how drones can be used both as a hobbyist and a commercial user.
I am looking forward to using Crowded Space Drone’s experience and resources to build programs for drone operators on how they can understand and meet the new requirements to ensure they operate safely and within the law. I believe this is a great opportunity to work with operators who want to learn a more advanced level of drone operations and look to achieve enhanced permissions from the CAA.”