FAA exemption clears the way for area drone business
By Alec Johnson
A local business can now use drones commercially thanks to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) exemption.
BirdsiVideo, based in Carmel, received an FAA exemption last month that allows it to fly drones for commercial purposes. While drone operation rules have been proposed by the FAA, it has banned drone flights for commercial purposes. Final rulings are expected in two to three years, but select companies such as BirdsiVideo have been granted exemptions to fly drones commercially. The Carmel-area business is just the 138th exemption granted nationwide and the 3rd in Indiana.
BirdsiVideo video producer Nik Heimach said that the exemption has opened the door for him and his FAA-certified business partner to take their business to the next level.
“Your mind just kind of explodes with possibilities that this could be used for,” Heimach said. “The cool thing is, we’re open to whatever a client wants from this. We’re not shoehorned into one industry or another. We encourage them to have creative ideas like us so that we can collaborate on new ways to even do this.”
The services that BirdsiVideo can provide range from helping real estate companies show off prospective homes to cities wanting a promotional video to show off their attractions. For example, Heimach said his company was working with the City of Carmel to promote construction and renovation work, as well as the city’s attractions. They have also done work with Westfield’s Grand Park to show off its facilities.
Looking ahead to the future, Heimach said it’s hard to plan, since the FAA could “switch on a dime” and change their rulings in a way that affects his business. However, he said that the FAA is proposing rules that are more lenient than ones they proposed six months before. With that in mind, they hope to expand their business to offer more services, and normalize drone videos in people’s minds.
Heimach is excited to see his dream take off now that the exemption is in place.
“It feels like the opportunity for everything you want to do is finally in your hands,” Heimach said.
For more information on BirdsiVideo, visit birdsivideo.com.