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Drones: Opportunity or liability in construction?

"With great power, comes great responsibility," this popular saying from Spiderman or Winston Churchill, depending on who you want to credit, can hold true for the use of drones. Drones have the power to gather information, information that can provide the user with great power.

How are drones used in construction?

These small robots are gaining in popularity for both personal and professional use. One example of an industry that could benefit from the use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS): construction.

Drones can serve a number of functions on a construction site, including:

  • Developing the plan. The drones can survey a potential site with relative ease. This could result in gathering information needed to put together a plan or bid using less time and manpower.
  • Conducting safety checks. Drones can patrol the site and gather information on how the site is operated. It can serve as a valuable tool both for government officials inspecting a site and job managers looking to ensure safety protocol is followed. A failure to follow safety regulations can lead not only to fines, but to catastrophic accidents.
  • Updating clients. The drones can also be used to take aerial photos to update clients on the progress of the project.

Although these are just some of the more common benefits of using drones at construction sites, there are downsides as well.

What are the risks to using drones in construction?

One of the primary issues for workers in the construction industry involves personal injury. If a drone operator is not properly trained, the UAS could provide more of a safety issue than it would be worth. Instead of helping to conduct safety checks, the device could lead to injuries.

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