General Drone Project Progress/Inspection Guidelines.

This guideline is intended to give an overview of the key aspects of conducting a variety of remote inspections. It outlines the basic steps in the inspection process and reflects our leading expertise in remote inspections using Remotely Piloted Airborne Systems (RPAS – Drones)

Drones are becoming established as the favoured tool in Roof inspections for a variety of reasons:

working ‘at-height’ comes with inherent risks – these are greatly reduced.

roof inspections/project progress monitoring are a more cost-effective solution than traditional surveying methods; no more costly scaffolding, cranes or cherry pickers. Efficiency, Drones can be deployed rapidly with reduced set-up time and no operational shut-downs.

Data Quality
Identified Defects/lack of progress are interrogated with close-up visual inspection using ultra-high-definition footage and stills. 

Data Volume
fresh, updated visuals on previously difficult-to-see or difficult-to-access areas, boosting output and supporting better decision-making.


Before employing an aerial surveying service, make sure you are clear on the type of output you can expect. An Aerial Perspective offers a variety of service levels for project progress/roof inspections amongst others:

  • Photographic evidence of Inspections/Project Progress for each project.
  • Inspections/repair/maintenance work progress monitoring tailored to   management specific OR site-specific requirements  

In addition, ask for:

  • Type of drone proposed (Drone redundancy is paramount to safety)
  • Proof of piloting company’s knowledge of safety-critical issues.
  • SACAA Licence Number.
  • Approach to pre-flight briefings, risk-assessment and site assessment.
  • Examples of previously completed progress presentations/inspections.
  • Details of any previous safety incidents.
  • Proposed flight-crew composition.


Utilising drones requires a high degree of technical expertise and relevant operating permissions. The Field Operations Manual Statutory, Site/Operational Area-Specific Documentation, including but not restricted to:

  • Flight Authorization, Site Assessment, Operating Airspace, Risk Assessment, On-Site Emergency Details, Land Owner Permissions etc .
  • Company FOM and SOP’s to be followed as per SACAA/Company requirements
  • Timing and image sequencing plan


A range of additional safety measures and processes are required pre-flight:

  • Wind Assessment: Wind is a significant factor in all aerial inspections and needs careful consideration on the day.
  • Communication: Two-way communication with the Site Manager is advised.
  • Emergency Procedures: Best practice dictates sharing of basic emergency procedures with all those present on-site and relevant emergency services in the surrounding area.
  • Pre- Flight Aircraft Checks: As per pre-flight checklist.

Set-out specific requirements to include:

  • Objectives
  • Known and suspected defects
  • Land ownership details
  • Communications strategy
  • Other site-specific information

Pre-assess proposed operator:

  • Skills
  • Knowledge
  • Accreditation
  • Qualification
  • Procedure
  • Process

Be aware of pre-inspection routine and monitor:

  • Pre-flight check process
  • Preparedness to fly
  • Crew competence

Monitor flight set-up carefully and approve:

  • Safety
  • Communications plan
  • Emergency procedures

Assess the quality of inspection and how closely it met the original brief.

Feed results back to the operator where possible:

  • Accuracy
  • Safety
  • Speed
  • Cost-efficiency

Discuss the possibility for:

  • Additional Job Referrals
  • Using the job as promotional material
  • Ownership of images and video