So you know you need a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC), but maybe you aren't sure where to start. What kind of information does Transport Canada want? What does a typical SFOC look like?
The main problem is that there is no "standard" SFOC application. It all depends on what you plan to use your drone for, and Transport Canada expects applicants to know what they're talking about.
If that sounds confusing, don't worry — you aren't alone. There are a few organizations that have SFOC templates you can check out.
Some of the points they cover in the template are:
- Mission overview
- Contact during mission
- Proposed dates and times
- Security plan
Another template is from Flitelab, a company that provides custom aerial video, photography, and related media services for private, commercial, and industrial applications. They're experts on the SFOC process as well.
According to them, there are a few main points that the application should hit. Those include:
- Description of the operator
- Description of the operation
- Description of the flight location and dates/times
- Description of the UAV and related flight/control systems
- Description of the personnel and their experience and roles
- Description of operational and emergency procedure
- Reference to insurance coverage and any associated certificates/licenses, etc
Check out Flitelab's sample SFOC application, so you can see what all of that looks like on paper, ready for Transport Canada to look over. Keep in mind that this is only a sample; each SFOC will be different, depending on what you're using your drone for.