The third annual National Drone Safety Awareness Week 2021 is set for mid-September, with both virtual and in-person events, depending on where you’re at. The holiday week of sorts was created by the Federal Aviation Administration to raise awareness about drones, with a focus specifically on recreational drone pilots.
The week runs from Sept. 13-19, 2021, with each day having a different theme. They are:
- Monday: safe flyers take the recreational unmanned aircraft safety test (TRUST).
- Tuesday: register your drone and mark it properly.
- Wednesday: become part of the flying community.
- Thursday: new rules like Remote ID and Operations over People.
- Friday: public safety and public acceptance.
- Weekend: go fly.
But while the event is led by the FAA, it largely relies on individuals and the private sector to actually put on events. In fact, the FAA is asking people in the drone community — that’s you — to host or participate in an event of your own.
If you do host an event (in-person or virtual), then the FAA asks you to follow all local health guidelines (of course). Additionally, you can share your events online in a few different ways to let everyone know about it, whether they actually attend or not. To share online you can:
- post about your event using the Unmanned Safety Team’s National Drone Safety Week Voluntary Tracking Tool
- post your own social content using #DroneWeek
The FAA has also created digital assets including Zoom backgrounds, smartphone screens and more to help support promotion of your own event.
Some of the private events in past years were actually quite large. For example, in Phoenix, you could have attended AZ DroneFest in 2019. That same year, Zing Drone Delivery hosted a live demo near their headquarters in Florida. Use the Tracking Tool to find upcoming events in your area as they post this year.
Official FAA Drone Safety Awareness Week 2021 events
The FAA will also be keeping the internet busy by posting updates from two of its accounts: @FAADroneZone and @UAST.
That said, the FAA is hosting virtual events of its own, including a photo showcase and [email protected] activity list. Here’s what you need to know about the official Official FAA Drone Safety Awareness Week 2021 events:
Digital Photo Showcase
With the FAA’s digital photo showcase, pilots are encouraged to send the FAA photos taken by a drone, and they may be featured on the FAA Drone Zone Twitter and Facebook accounts throughout the week.
To have a chance at being featured, email your photos to [email protected] by Monday, August 30. You can optionally include your Twitter or Facebook handle (if you’d like to be tagged in your photo) or technical camera details. Photos must be taken by a drone or have a drone in the photo, and must be submitted as a .jpeg, .jpg or .png in a file size not to exceed 5MB.
The FAA says it will choose photos to post based on factors including appropriateness, composition, content and creativity.
The FAA also has an activity page called [email protected] of ways to stay engaged with drones that don’t necessarily even require going outside. That might be ideal if you’re still practicing social distancing and still trying to stay away from crowds.
Many of the ideas are kid-focused, such as learning about the Principle of Thrust by Making a Foamie Flyer (PDF) or learning with AIAA’s K-12 Everyday Drones Lesson Plans.
The activities could theoretically be done with a group — a scavenger hunt could be a great icebreaker for a local drone club — or could be done on your own.
Are you planning to participate in next month’s National Drone Safety Awareness Week 2021? If so, how? Leave a comment below!