By: Dave Thompson
VP of Operations
As more and more industries are finding the use of commercial drones crucial to streamlining their operations, this situation has started to open a floodgate of operators, as demand is surpassing the availability of truly qualified recruiters and pilots.
This opens the door for less than qualified, and downright unsavory players into the arena.
Operators that recruit for numbers with scant focus on quality of service or wellbeing of employees doing the actual field work.
As having been on the receiving end of such players, we realize what the reality is. As disorganization, lies, avoiding payment owed, ignoring pleas from desperate pilots doing the actual work, and how counterproductive creating such an atmosphere can be, as disillusionment and negativity prevail and directly affect the standards of quality service, thereby, reducing safety standards and wasting client investments.
At CA-ADI, we truly understand the affects that a less than satisfied staff member or members can have on the quality of a product.
That’s why it is imperative that all staff members at CA-ADI are treated with the utmost in respect, being treated as a valued team member, they are well compensated and appreciated for the efforts they apply each and every day.
We are proud to create an atmosphere of positivity where input and ideas are taken seriously from all team members.
We know, as most should, that what you put in will multiply in what you receive, as you will grow a truly dedicated staff that is more than happy to go the extra mile to help produce a superior product that we can all be proud of.
This ripples outward, and absolutely increases the value of our product to each and every one of our clients when they can rest assured, that our team is more than willing to do whatever it takes to deliver a superior service.
By Dave Thompson
VP of Operations.
How often do we put off starting a necessary task just because it seems too complicated or daunting?
We know that we are all guilty of this at one time or another, only to find that the hardest part was making that first step.
Time and again we’ve seen new technology get avoided just because it looked too complicated, and in business, time wasted is money wasted.
Those that welcome new technologies and processes, those that keep an open mind to change are usually the winners in this game.
The widely accepted and common thought process that applying more man hours equals more progress may be a hard cycle to break, but it’s time to break that cycle or be left behind.
Drones or UAV’s (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) are one of the latest technological marvels that are drastically reshaping our world as we speak.
It’s difficult to find an industry that won’t benefit from drone technologies, now and even more so in the future.
UAV technologies have advanced at an exponential rate, and are now more user friendly than you may ever have imagined.
Just at the basic consumer level, the UAV’s of today fly autonomously, return to home without user interface, and if a pilot becomes overwhelmed or distracted at any time, he/she can just let go of the controls and the UAV will hover patiently, guided by GPS in one spot until the pilot is ready to resume.
It’s time to stop procrastination, welcome this new and vibrant technology with open arms, and reap the benefits now.
According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), MAD (minimum approach distance) from Transmission and Distribution power is dependent on the voltage of the tower. There is no industry standard for how far UAVs should be away from electric towers. Most likely, it is up to the electric company to set its own guidelines. Some companies indicate that 6-10 feet away from isolators is sufficient enough without risk, however it also depends on the type of UAV used for the aerial assessment.
MAD is to ensure that workers do not approach or get closer to the energized parts of T&D lines.
UAV pilots must adjust for altitude correction factors to the minimum approach distances in the table below set by OSHA. As always, we must consider changes in the weather and adjust the minimum approach distances.
Safety is a priority when assessing T&D lines using UAVs. It is the PIC (Pilot in command) responsibility to make sure that the the mission for every tower is a safe one. Launch and landing area must be clear in its surroundings, checklist followed on every flight and most importantly, keep the distance from energized lines. Safe flight everyone. Cheers!
How is electricity produced in the USA?
We all take it for granted. We walk into a room, flip the switch on and there you have it, electricity. Most of us have no clue how this type of energy gets generated, the energy that keeps our devices, home appliances, business....etc
So, the basic concept of electricity generation is using turbines. Turbines are turned so that it spins magnets surrounded by copper wire, to generate energy.
To turn the turbines, you’ll require a fuel source.
There are 3 types of resources that generate electricity in the USA,
Energy sources of electric generation:
Natural gas, 32%
Nuclear energy, 20%
Renewable energy, 20%
Wind power, 6%
Biomass power, 2%
Petroleum, less than 1%
Solar power, 1%
From power stations, electricity flows to transmission lines on large size lattice towers, on to substations in cities and towns to distribution lines carrying smaller amounts of electricity to houses and businesses.
Just simple facts.
Sadly enough, it’s what some major corporations do, it is a common practice now these days, let’s just deal with it after the fact. In the eyes of so big to fail companies, in order to please share holders, maintenance has become an after thought, if it’s not broken, then we don’t have to worry about it. That is the mentality of major for profit power companies.
Although the cost of scheduled maintenance is much less than fixing what broke and caused lots of damages, it is often put on the back burner, and when catastrophe happens, big companies spend astronomical amount of money to fix equipment, manage their inventory and pay PR companies to change the public’s consciousness at the same time. That is what is called reactive thinking, dealing with it after the fact.
Reactive thinking is a major problem and it defies logic on so many ways. The word safety is heard in every conversation, in every marketing advertisement, in every meeting but, it is rarely practiced. For Profit companies, with billions in profits, are getting away with minimum maintenance and hardly seeking intelligent data of their assets.
Transmission and distribution power lines require regular scheduled maintenance, and for a company with thousands of miles of T&D lines, it is difficult to maintain an accurate assessment unless pre actively thought of and work is in place to establish the labor required for such task. Big companies can afford such projects by outsourcing to contractors and subcontractors.
Small companies on the other hand, don’t have the massive level of resources that big companies have, outsourcing can be extremely costly but since their inventory is much less, implementing a solid, skilled team to perform maintenance and assessment on regular basis is much easier.
It is the year 2019 and intelligent robotics technology has advanced dramatically, and can help small power providing companies perform their maintenance and collect data, much faster and in such efficiency than humans can accomplish. Implementation of UAS (Unmanned Aircraft Systems) is one of the greatest tools for collecting the most proficient data in such short time in the most cost effective way. Implementation of commercial drones within an organization is the most logical explanation for T&D lines assessment.
California ADI (Aerial Data Imaging) has been conducting UAS aerial inspections over T&D lines with the most skilled FAA licensed commercial drone pilots nationwide.
Our consulting and training program helps small utilities companies establish their own UAS program. We know how to help companies save money, time and diminish the risk of injury.
Do not let your organization be the canary in the coal mine.
Recovering after a wildfire is an effort that requires the help and expertise of many organizations. After both, the fire department and local Sheriff and law enforcement have given the green light to return to the property, you have lots of work to do.
If you have already enrolled into California ADI’s WAAS program (Wildfires Aerial Assessment Services), and obtained the before the fire assessment, you should contact us immediately to schedule your after the fire assessment, before clean up.
This is an overwhelming process for anyone to go through, specially homeowners and what happens after your first visit back to the property depends on how severe the damages that are caused by the fire. Your first walkthrough should give you an indication of level of destruction and how bad of a situation you are in at that moment. This is an emotionally exhausting time for you and your family members as emotions will be running high.
Never attempt the clean up by yourself.
This is a process that requires professional fire restoration companies to get involved. Be aware that it is common after a wildfire to have so many toxic materials present on site, please be cautious.
You should have contacted your insurance agent already by that time. It is preferred that you contact your insurance agent and upon receiving the order to evacuate, your insurance agent should be informed. Your agent will walk you through the process and guide you on what informations the insurance company will acquire from you. Your agent will inform you of what steps lie ahead for your expectations.
At this time, California ADI has gathered all the stored data from your WAAS files and prepared your WAAS folder. This data is vital to your recovery process.
You now have the perfect digitized assessment of the property before and after the fire. A package that will show and proof your loss.
Whether your claim involves private, local, state of federal agencies such as FEMA, the evidence generated and provided by California ADI’s WAAS program is of great significance to the litigation practice and approach and has a great affect on settlement outcome. You must have proof of what you had to be fairly compensated by the insurance companies.
You can always visit our WAAS page at https://www.ca-adi.com/wildfires-assessment.html
It is as if nature contracted the biggest demolition company in the state and sent it out to literally destroy Paradise. One fire ruined an entire city, so fast that most of the damage was done in less than 24 hours.
Wildfires are becoming more ferocious than ever. Powerful, fast with extreme destruction. Everyone thought that 2017 was the most devastating year of wildfires in the history of California and suddenly comes the Camp Fire. Fire so ruinous, that according to the latest update by Cal Fire on Wednesday, 11.21.2018, the camp fire has claimed 153,336 acres - 80% contained, 13,503 residences, 514 commercial and 4,404 other buildings are destroyed with more than 5,100 structures threatened by the fire. http://www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents/incidentdetails/Index/2277
It is an undeniable fact that most wildfires are created by humans, and since the number of humans moving into the woods have increased dramatically. Wild-land Urban Interface or WUI is a habitable and transitional zone between civilized human development and un-occupied land. Humans have been invading the forest and the results are not pleasing.
With extremely dry conditions, drought, wind and increase of temperature, California and its massive mountains and majestic forests along with human are the fundamental ingredient to the mega fires.
Mega fires is a term used to explain a massive fire. A fire as catastrophic as the Camp fire, can ruin an entire city in just few hours. This is the new trend of California wildfires. They are bigger, hostile and full of anger and the wrecking level is of a mega magnitude.
We are heartbroken for those who lost everything. The holidays is here, and there are thousands of people in tents and shelters trying to figure out how on earth they ended up there and how to get out.
Please help those who lost everything, visit our list of trusted charities at https://www.ca-adi.com/wildfires-donations.html
Let’s help one another and the California spirit of love and compassion, will take us on a an amazing journey on the road of recovery to rebuilding back our communities, and work together to combat the repercussions of climate control.
It is the two most asked question upon receiving a phone call from a client. What is WAAS and why do I need it.
our lifestyle in California has changed, we are at risk of wildfires across the state, no one is safe. No one is safe from the devastation caused by furious and aggressive fires fueled by climate change, years of drought and dry dry vegetation.
WAAS is a property assessment program, designed to provide property owners with data that represents the actual status of a property before the fire, including terrains and structures. Aerial images, videos, new 2D map & 3D model of property are solid proof and evidence that property owners will be glad to have after a (God Forbid) a wildfire damage.
We do not wish for anyone to go through the devastation and grief caused by a wildfire BUT, what happens if you do?
The data provided has allowed clients to gain thousands of dollars on their insurance claim. Money that insurance companies were reluctant on paying back due to the lack of evidence. Money is gained from litigations with power companies, money a property owner deserves but truly lacks the fundamental basic issue, can you prove it.
We store your data for 5 years, accessible to our clients at the move of a click, they can review and download as many times as they wish.
So, why do you need WAAS? just in case, since no one is safe from a wildfires damage, you are equipped with solid, scientific and intelligent data that proves your ownership.
I watch the news like everyone else (that’s a bad habit for you), news of crimes, bad politicians, traffic, wall street, healthcare and weather plus stories about good people doing good things for the community. Lately, it’s been about heartbreaking stories surrounding the devastation of the wildfires. I have seen many images and videos about intense angry fires that devour every structure in its path, and watched my wife talk with her mother on the phone while my mother in-law was grabbing stuff from her home before the mandatory evacuation order came down. Still, it was just normal for me, another wildfire tragedy, been so many lately. I felt bad for the devastation but that was it, feeling bad watching the news and life moves on right after, no hard feelings.
Then one day at a friend’s house for a lovely Sunday brunch, I ran into our good friend Beth, we haven’t seen her in quite some time and she introduced us to her boyfriend Kurt. Now, we heard before that Kurt had lost his home in the Tubbs fire back in October of 2017 and we talked about him loosing the house and the horrible process that people go through after the devastation. Kurt is a very nice guy, very early sixties, well educated dentist with his own practice and currently living in a guest house of one of his friends.
Somehow, The conversation with Kurt hit a cord with me and few weeks later, I contacted Beth asking her if she could pass on to Kurt that I would like to take some aerial images of his property after the fire and he agreed and on we go.
Woke up early, grabbed my drone, got into my Prius and started a long 110 mile drive to Windsor, CA on a perfect San Francisco Bay day in August, foggy and overcast, the way we like it. I met Kurt at a Badass coffee house (that is the name), got our morning cub of java and I proceeded to follow him to his property.
What you feel when you first get there is a cloud of sadness, it is as if the air was filled with sadness, such a strange feeling. Nothing is left there, all gone after cleaning the property, just ground and concrete foundation. Since his property is on a hill, the view from what used to be his front porch is absolutely stunning. I was looking at what makes all of us live in California, it is such a gorgeous state.
My sadness level increased once I got my drone up in the air, the bird’s eye view makes you see things from a different perspective and Wow, the amount of devastation that fire caused in one neighborhood is astounding when you look at it from above. I kept my drone flying taking images and recording video.
After an hour of shooting, I decided to map the area. For those who are unfamiliar with the concept, we fly drones in a certain flight path and we acquire hundreds of truly high quality images, pass it all through bunch of softwares to pretty much create a brand new 2D map and a 3D model of the entire property.
I stood there talking with Kurt, right where his garage used to be, and he said “morally, you think about this and you have to question yourself, should you count your loss and move on or, you stick with memories and rebuild what you started? How do you figure this out?
In my home office, I uploaded all the images and the videos and started to process the data I gathered. It has been over couple months and I just can’t stop thinking about the devastation caused by the fires. I met few people who lost their property, got to hear their stories on how they actually deal with such grief in their lives and I started to feel sad with every story I heard. I now have sadness in my life and somehow, I feel good about it. Sadness opened my heart to a catastrophic tragedy that I used to feel just normal about it, it made me realize that what they lost is so enormous I honestly have no idea how they cope. With it.
From the horror stories I heard, insurance claims are not easy, insurance company need so many details that most fire victims don’t end up with the appropriate and deserved compensation for their loss. Therefore, WAAS was created.
I came up with our Wildfires Aerial Assessment Services, a program that offers property digitization. Data and evidence produced and collected before and after the fire is of such value to any local, private or federal claim. A solid comparison of what one had and what they have now is a clear and irrefutable evidence to submit as a claim. Aerial mapping, imaging, new technologies and science is what everyone needs as confirmation of ownership.
My heart breaks for those who slept outside the first night, those who were unable to take a decent shower for few days, those who lost their furry four legged friends, those who stood on a pile of trash of what used to be called a home. My heart is aching and I want to help. i want to help those who are in high risk fire area and prepare them for an unfortunate event in case it happens and I want to help those who lost everything they had to a fire.
I’m a changed human at this point, sad and frustrated that many lost and they will not recover from it. Suddenly, it appears that watching the news didn’t affect me as much as paying a visit to a wildfire site.
Join me in trying to figure out a way to help. Cheers!
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Wildfires are a common recurring threat to our lifestyle with many counties at high risk (up to 80%).
We specialize in aerial drone mapping, imaging, data collection and assessment of residential and commercial properties through Property Digitization (PD) BEFORE and AFTER a wildfire. We Digitize your Property (DYP).
This is a new era, property digitization is accurate, affordable and must be done for properties in wildfires high risk area. Digitizing your property provides you with sustainable and accurate data to protect your property in the event of wildfire destruction.
California ADI’s Property Digitization is our efforts to provide property owners with accurate assessment of the current standing of the property terrain, including buildings and natural components, by using the art and science of drone mapping and topography to generate 2D/ 3D map. This data is vital to local, private, federal and litigation claim process , and to help in the recovery from the devastation of the California wildfires. Digital comparison of data before and after a wildfire is essential to the recovery and rebuilding efforts.