Roof Inspections & GDPR

Hi all

I’m thinking of offering roof and gutter inspection videos & pictures around my local area using my Mavic Air (especially thinking this may be more popular following the storm!)

So I’m fairly satisfied in what is required to undertake this work with licenses etc but I’m struggling to find clear guidance in regards to filming in public areas.

Essentially I’m thinking, would there be a privacy issue if I was filming a terraced house and the neighbour wasn’t happy? I get that you can mitigate this and make sure you only get the shots of the house etc but just want to be prepared for the situation as I’m sure there will be someone that’s unhappy!

My main concern is if it does indeed breach GDPR. I’ve tried searching and watching videos but I’m still not clear on it!!

Google street view gets round whatever issues there are by blurring faces and number plates. Just an opinion.

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Yeah that’s a fair point. I did think this could be an option or to just not include any shots that capture people. I suppose the issues comes in proving to someone that’s particularly unhappy that you won’t use those shots or that you will definitely blur it out (i.e. they would just have to take your word for it at the time)

There are guys on here with infinite more knowledge on this than me. But at the end of the day, a chat in person with persons involved is probably the most amicable / civil way


Have you got your A2 CofC ?

Might need it if your doing terraced/semi detached work

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Further, GDPR only relates to how you store and use the images/video you have taken.

If you are doing this as a you will need a GDPR policy (if your going by the book)

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@C0LM4N I’d inform your client that they should inform their neighbours on either side of when the flight was occurring. You do not want to get involved in neighbour disputes.

And you’re over thinking the privacy perspective :slight_smile:


Yes mate I have A2CofC so would fly under A1 transitional

Thank you, that is a great shout.
This is why I like working a non-customer facing role as my day job, much less complications!

I think you’re right, I have a habit of overthinking these things before getting stuck in! I just had a helpful conversation with someone that operates drones locally to me and he gave some sound advice about treating it no differently to filming on your phone and if someone does complain just explain that you’re only capturing images of the subject of the job.


If you do get your client to inform the neighbours that may be affected by your flight it may be worthwhile to offer a discount if he can get his neighbour(s) to sign up for a survey to be done at the same time.


I like your style!

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Brilliant shout, I too like your style!

How are you handling the 50m exclusion circle around your aircraft? Pedestrian cordon, road closure, leaflet drop, door knock campaign, or a combination? Another option is to have spotters dotted around with walky talkys / phones, then only fly when they say no-one is in your zone. Can be a bit stop n start in busy areas though.
A Mini 2 purchase would solve all those issues of course :wink:

@ximi I saw a similar comment to this on Facebook… There is no 50m exclusion zone under A1 transitional. Also not sure where all this leaflet drop etc comes from, I don’t see it as a requirement anywhere I’ve looked! Any links to references to this requirement?

The only thing getting a mini 2 would give me is the ability to fly over people for a short period of time!

You’re absolutely right … I’m having a major senior moment this morning getting mixed up with A2 ops … time for my medication I think !!!

Edit: I should have read your initial post properly, cause you even said it’s a Mavic Air (430g) rather than a Mavic Air 2 (570g) … (smacks himself on the back of the head)

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Everyone has those days! Mine is usually before a good hit of coffee!!

No problem though, I’m always happy to be corrected or educated so was genuinely interested to see if I was misunderstanding the rules!

You should be able to do a roof survey and provide final output without any personal video data involved. Delete any source footage which does contain images with personal data (e.g. faces). To cover the permission side of things, put up clear signage to advise people that you are performing a roof survey and the times this will be happening. Ideally have a spotter to advise people who want to walk under your in-flight drone. You have a duty to inform (safety) rather than get explicit permission (privacy). If you do capture faces and you want to use the footage commercially you will need to get permission from the ‘data owner’. I have never seen this for a roof survey. BUT - you will have the personal data of your customers (name, address, phone number etc…) and this will be covered by GDPR. Any stored personal data is covered by GDPR. It is covered for the lifetime of the data and you need to have a written GDPR policy to cover that data until it is deleted. If you only use paper records then this is covered by the DPA. So to take the first line of your post and rephrase it. "I’m thinking of starting a commercial enterprise, offering roof and gutter inpection services " You wil also need public liability insurance and will need to declare your earnings to HMRC.

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I have used my Mini 2 to inspect my own roof. If you chose this route you would find the Mini 2 more than adequate for your purposes.

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Thanks for the comprehensive response. I agree most shots should easily avoid capturing anyone’s faces. I’m all clued up on the GDPR aspect of storing the personal data etc as I deal with this in my day job but just never dealt with the filming/photo side of it.
Also far too aware of the HMRC involvement in taking money from me!