...you write the rules
An operational safety case (OSC) is the methodology used for gaining a CAA exemption from the standard set of rules which govern the operation of unmanned aircraft or drones. An OSC allows you as the operator to write your own rules, however the exemption will only be granted if you can prove to the CAA that you can operate safely. To apply for an OSC you will need to write a 3 volume operations manual in accordance with the guidelines in the CAA's CAP722 document and present sufficient safety arguments and mitigation's to satisfy the CAA that you do not pose a risk
What can i apply for?
The great thing about an OSC is that you can apply for any exemption that you like. During your initial discovery call we will discuss with you your exact requirements and we will tailor your application and the mitigations you put in place to meet your needs and safety targets for your organisation
Most of the OSCs we have completed for our clients fall within one or more of the following common exemptions:
What do the CAA require?
In order to obtain an OSC from the CAA you will need to submit evidence which proves that you are able to operate safely and in accordance with the exemption you have applied for. CAP722 provides guidance on how you should do this, and requires you to write a 3 volume operations manual which is tailored specifically to your organisation:
Volume 1 contains your company structure, policies and procedures, and should include items such as health and safety, staff training, maintenance, flight planning and operating procedures
Volume 2 contains information regarding the equipment which you intend to operate, as well as its safety features, single points of failure, safety record and redundancy
Volume 3 contains your risk assessment and safety arguments which prove to the CAA that the procedures and equipment in Volumes 1 & 2 ensure that you can operate safely
In addition to the 3 volumes, Fleet UAS produce a set of supporting evidence with your application. This evidence is not mandatory, but greatly increases your chances of achieving the best possible OSC exemption from the CAA. We know what the CAA look for and this can make a big difference when it comes to their assessment
What is our process?
When you commission us to help you with your OSC application, we go through a 5 step process which usually takes approximately 12 weeks from start to finish:
The first stage of the OSC process is to run a one-to-one consultation with you. In this consultation we will talk through your requirements, your application and your organisation so that we understand you, your business, its policies and its needs. We will at this stage ask for all your current documentation and review it before progressing
Assessment of Risk
Once we understand your business and its requirements, we will then complete an assessment of your risks. This may be completed informally or if your application is more complex, use a functional failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) or equivalent. Once the risks are assessed we will then move onto the development phase
The development phase is where we develop the set of mitigations which provide the safety case to the CAA. We will schedule a series of meetings with you to determine what mitigations should be applied using the ALARP methodology. We aim to make sure that the mitigations are effective without hampering your operation
Once we have a high level view of the major risks and mitigations for your operation, we will then start putting together your documentation. Any relevant information in your existing manual will be incorporated and a brand new formatted manual will be developed. Any additional evidence will also be compiled ready for submission to the CAA
After about 30 days, you should hear back from the CAA with your initial offer. Often the CAA can miss vital evidence during their assessment and so we aid you during your discussions to point out vital evidence in your submission. Once a a final offer has been received, Fleet UAS shall make the necessary amendments and your OSC will be awarded to you
Why choose us?
There are approximately 116 operators in the UK who have been successful in their OSC application to date. Around 15% of those who have been successful have used our OSC writing services. Below are the reasons why people choose us:
We have 100% success rate
None of our clients have had their OSC applications rejected. If we don't think you will be successful we will tell you before you commission our services. We take the worry out of your application and give you realistic expectations as to what you are likely to receive
Our OSCs are tailored specifically to your organisation
Fleet UAS do not use templates, as the CAA are likely to reject these. Our experts write your OSC so that it is tailored specifically for your organisation, including internal policies/ procedures, operating environment and risk tolerance. We believe that your operations manual is an investment, not just a hoop to jump through
Obtain better exemptions
We are experts in mitigating risk, and we know what the CAA look for when assessing OSC applications. We use this knowledge so that you get the best possible exemption (such as smaller operating distances). In doing so, we save you time and money having to reapply for a better OSC at a later date
Receive expert advice
Our OSC expert was one of the first 10 people in the UK to have an OSC approved and has been writing OSC's for over 4 years. His PhD covers drone safety, verification and risk analysis for BVLOS operations. He has built and operated drones for 9 years and sits on ARPAS, BSI, DIAG and ISO committees for drones
Compliment with training
Fleet UAS provides a range of training both in-house and with our training partner organisations. We will not only help you obtain your exemption, but provide you with expert training so that you can operate safely. We believe that training is key to ensuring your operation is safe
How long does the process take?
The CAA are currently quoting 30 working days (6 weeks) to assess an application, however this can often turn into 8 weeks if you include the negotiation. We aim to write your operations manual within 6 weeks, however this does depend on several factors. Therefore you could expect the process to take around 12-14 weeks to complete. We provide an estimated timescale in all our quotations
How much does it cost?
This can vary on a number of factors, including the number of aircraft you want included, the nature of your application and the current format of your operations manual. We normally provide a quote on a fixed price, based on an estimate of the number of days to complete the project. We can also work on a day rate if you prefer to work like that. Please contact us for a quotation
With the new EASA A2 category allowing me to operate down to 5m, do i need an OSC?
No existing drones are compliant with the A2 category and if any new drones are manufactured which do meet this standard, you will have to invest in new equipment. Even so, the 5m distance quoted is a horizontal distance and there is talk of a 1 to 1 rule which means that as you increase in height the horizontal distance does too. We think that this will be useful for a small minority of operations, but will not be as useful as some might believe it to be. Please get in touch if you have any questions and we can help you decide what to do
How will the new EASA regulations affect my OSC?
If you obtain an OSC, this will be converted into an operational authorisation so that you can operate in the new EASA specific category. Your OSC will therefore not be affected if your application is processed before 1st July 2020
How do i get started?
If you would like to receive a quotation, please you can use the following form:
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