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    Why are Quantity Surveyors using drones on construction sites?

    What is drone technology?

    Drone technology, known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), is a small flying aircraft system that can be remotely controlled. Drones are equipped with downward-facing sensors, such as RGB, multispectral, thermal or LIDAR and they can capture a lot of aerial data in a short space of time. They are an innovation which is really taking off in the construction industry and are a key tool used by quantity surveyors, mainly for building surveying and inspection purposes.

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    How is it influencing the construction industry?

    Construction mapping

    Drone software systems produce accurate contour maps and 3D models, based on footage and data gathered.

    Progress monitoring

    Drone systems use real-time monitoring for enhanced security and in-the moment evaluation, response and planning. Producing weekly progress maps is easier, quicker and less costly than traditional methods.


    Dangerous structures including areas where hazardous materials are leaking or there is risk of fire from flammable materials, can be too risky to send in personnel. Drone technology can present a safer option as it can remain at a safe distance, contributing to overall worker safety.

    Reaching inaccessible/unsafe areas

    Drones can reach inaccessible areas which saves time as well as minimising risk. This could include analysing roof structures from above which prevents the need to send surveyors up there to assess.

    What are the risks?

    • Quantity surveyors need to make sure that the drones comply with the Civil Aviation Authority‚Äôs requirements. If they do not comply with the requirements, they can face large fines.
    • Surveyors also need to be aware of violating the Data Protection Act. Drones should only be used for the purpose of monitoring inaccessible areas and should not capture recordings of individuals when flying over other areas.
    • Lastly, companies need to make sure that their insurance covers risks such as collisions with people, buildings and other aircraft which can lead to property damage and personal injury.


    Propeller, a manufacturer of drone technology specifically used for construction sites, was founded in 2014 and has helped multiple customers to operate better, faster and smarter. Customers in the civil construction industry rely on Propeller to produce accurate and reliable site surveys that keep their teams focused and safe. Find out more about Propeller drone technology by clicking here.

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