Two inspectors with the Federal Aviation Administration’s Honolulu office will be the featured guests at the Hawaii Drone Club’s monthly meeting on Thursday night.
The FAA’s Flight Standards District Office recently added two agents to its permanent team whose responsibilities include Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). Edward Santa Elena is the office’s Principal Operations Inspector and Timothy J. Cislo is an Aviation Safety Inspector for Maintenance.
“They were very willing to speak with the club when i asked them,” club founder and president Ryan “Sal” Salcido tells me.
He points out that their community outreach is likely something they are doing on their own time, and that their participation in the meeting is not opening up “the FAA UAS general question line.”
“Their job is to inspect and maintain the approved FAA regulations… think of them as compliance officers,” Salcido explains. “My impression is they are taking a light, social engaging touch out of personal care and ambition.”
In order to be able to provide the most helpful information, the club is asking that questions for the FAA be submitted in advance via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Salcido founded the Hawaii Drone Club earlier this year, which has hosted several monthly club meetings already. At the June meeting, local drone expert Ted Ralston gave a presentation on a proposed Pan-Pacific quadcopter event, and attendees discussed supporting Community Emergency Response Teams, quadcopter racing, and the need for an advocacy chair.
“Counter-drone legislation will be a major subject during the next Hawaii legislative session,” Salcido notes. “[The club] needs to advocate carefully and accurately.”
This upcoming meeting will be at a new location for the club: Kakaako Agora (441 Cooke Street). Doors open at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 30, with the program kicking off at 7 p.m. For those unable to attend in person, Thursday’s meeting will also be streamed online.