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Northern Rivers locals can take their careers to new heights

Northern Rivers locals can take their careers to new heights

TAFE NSW will this month commence delivery of an updated Certificate III in Aviation (Remote Pilot) at TAFE NSW Wollongbar and Kingscliff.

The course will meet demands from local agricultural, construction and surveying industries for emerging drone services and will improve safety by training drone operators in accordance with current civil aviation regulations.

TAFE NSW Team Leader of Aviation Andrew Trease, said drone operators must have a deep understanding the legal and technical aspects of unmanned and manned operational environments and also benefit from industry-specific knowledge that can be applied in the field.

“The nationally-recognised qualification is designed to provide individuals and businesses with confidence that those using drones on their behalf have been trained beyond the minimum licensing requirements.

“Drones are becoming more sophisticated and popular, and a short remote piloted flight can often deliver superior, cheaper, and faster results for businesses,” Mr Trease said.

Popular applications for drones in agriculture include crop and livestock monitoring, irrigation management, and fertilization. Dronefly estimates that the aircraft can spray fertilizer 40 to 60 times faster than doing so by hand.

Students will undertake a 10-day face-to-face training component with 14 individual unit assessments as well as a theory and flight testing under the regulated CASA framework.

“As businesses across the state continue to explore the many technological possibilities afforded by drones, TAFE NSW is responding by customising training to meet their requirements,” he said.

“Drone use is not limited to private and commercial operators, our emergency services use drones as part of their response to floods, fires and environmental incidents”, Mr Trease said.

“Rather than bashing through the bush to access remote areas, it’s often safer and quicker to send in a drone to assess the scene and work out what resources are needed.”

Drone technology is becoming critical for a wide range of industries which is generating new opportunities for well trained and qualified remote aircraft pilots and commercial operators.

For more information about studying aviation at TAFE NSW, please visit or call 131 601.