Commercial drone insurance is a type of liability insurance designed to help cover third-party claims concerning property damage or bodily injury. Many such policies can also cover the costs of physical damage to the drone. The cost of commercial drone insurance can be affected by various factors. Insurance companies will often require that drone pilots keep documentation to prove they know how to safely operate this type of technology (e.g. proof of training).
Why Do Companies Need Commercial Drone Insurance?
No state government in the United States currently mandates any standard rules or regulations regarding drone insurance. However, it is important to acquire this type of coverage for your business because flying a drone carries several risks that could ultimately be very costly to your organization. If you work in any of the following industries, drone insurance may be especially beneficial:
- Real estate
- Law enforcement
- Emergency response & fire and rescue operations
- Commercial photographers and filmmakers
- Media and traffic monitoring
- Railroad and highway maintenance
What Affects The Cost?
The cost of insuring a drone, also known as an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), often depends on multiple factors. Here is a close analysis of four of these factors.
Cost Of The Drone
Commercial drones are generally more expensive than those intended for personal use. Personal drones (such as the Mavic Mini) may cost as little as $400. According to a 2016 study from research and advisory firm Gartner, commercial drones make up only 6% of the market, although their price tags of approximately $100,000 were projected to represent 60% of the industry’s revenue in 2017. Drones like the Inspire 2 (sold by China-based company DJI) can sell for as little as $3,300, while others may be significantly more expensive.
Industry Company Is In
Some industries are characterized by more risks than others. The greater the liabilities your company faces, the more you can expect to pay for drone insurance. For example, if you work for an emergency response unit, the cost of drone insurance will likely be high because a drone-related injury to a member of your team can be especially harmful to your operations. The same applies to a company whose property may become easily damaged by a drone (e.g. agriculture, real estate, media, and filmmaking).
Experience & Skill Of Pilot
Many insurers will often demand documents that serve as evidence that a pilot knows how to safely fly a UAV. These may include training certificates, maintenance logs of past flights, records of parts, and operating manuals. The stronger your pilots’ records are, the lower your insurance premiums will probably be. The purpose of this is to verify that you and your insurance company understand the risk to your drone and to the other people and objects near you and how any injuries or property damage will impact the insurer.
If one of your pilots flies a drone into a restricted zone, this can create serious issues for your company. Commercial drone insurance can help protect you from potential lawsuits over these types of incidents. Fortunately, many companies today are seeking new ways to prevent these types of scenarios from occurring.
Regardless of the industry your company is in, it’s important to be familiar with the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) rules for pilots of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). Certain types of operations are subject to waivers, registrations, or other requirements such as knowledge tests.
If you wish to insure your UAV itself and a camera attached to it, you may do this by purchasing Drone Hull insurance coverage. This type of policy can pay for the cost of repairing your drone if it becomes damaged during routine business operations. Drone Hull insurance typically does not cover damage due to a fire or theft, however.
Contact The Knowledgeable Drone Insurance Agents
Our drone insurance policies include aviation liability coverage (i.e. property damage and bodily injury), hull coverage for the vehicle itself, medical payments coverage, (which includes funeral expenses) and personal and advertising insurance, which can help cover claims of libel, defamation, or violation of privacy. Call JMG Insurance Agency today at 1-(844) 304-7332 or contact us online to request a quote or to learn more about our policies. We look forward to discussing the cost of commercial drone insurance with you, and helping you acquire a policy.