This is not a comprehensive guide to safety. It is intended as an overview of some key topics on safety, planning, and pre-flight preparation. Please refer to the FAA Part 107 guidelines for a comprehensive guide to safety.
Arming & Disarming the Drone
The DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone begins disarmed. The drone is armed and ready to fly when the combination of the stick commands is as shown below:
The drone becomes disarmed when it lands and the propellers stop.
It is safe to perform maintenance, adjustments, and any other tasks on the DJI Phantom 4 Pro only when the drone is disarmed.
Keep Fingers Away from Spinning Propellers
Keep all fingers away from spinning propellers. Drone propellers are very sharp and can rotate between 5,000 and 9,000 RPM. They can cause serious injury.
Do not change the propellers unless the drone is disarmed.
LiPo Battery Handling
- Follow all manufacturer’s recommended LiPo battery handling and charging procedures
- LiPo batteries should not be exposed to extreme heat and other environmental conditions
- Avoid dropping, hitting, or any other physical damage to LiPo batteries
- Follow manufacturer’s guidelines for properly handling or disposing of damaged LiPo batteries.
- All batteries that show any puffiness or any other signs physical damage show not be used and disposed of properly.
- Do not over charge or over dis-charge any batteries. Do not use or chart any overheated batteries. Allow batteries to cool off until they are lukewarm to the touch.
- Firmatek recommends using only manufacturer’s approved battery chargers.
- For more information please refer to the Firmatek LiPo Battery Best Practices Guide
Check the Weather
Weather conditions can change rapidly. Be prepared and always lean on the side of caution. Do not take chances. We recommend the following 3-step approach:
- Plan: Check the weather forecast well in advance (a week will suffice). Look for precipitation, extreme temperature, stormy or excessive wind conditions.
- Prepare: Double-check the weather forecast the day before and the day of flying.
- Observe: Observe the weather conditions and the surrounding environment prior to take-off as part of a regular pre-flight checklist. Look for any unusual, unexpected, and rapidly changing weather conditions.
Key Rules to Remember about the Weather:
- Do not fly with heavy (>25 mph) or severely gusty wind conditions where gusts can severely impact the safe operation of the drone and compromise drone photo quality, and significantly decrease battery life.
- Do not fly with any precipitation. The electronics inside the drone are sensitive to moisture and besides, you don’t want any water droplets accumulating on the lens of the camera, which can affect the optics of the photos.
- Rapidly moving clouds may affect the quality of photographs. Note: rapidly changing clouds, within overlapping photos, may adversely affect the photogrammetry stitching process.
- Note that direct overhead sunlight may cause an image “washout” effect especially if the area being mapped is a very light material like limestone.
- Always keep the camera lens clean and dry.