The inaugural NATE Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Operations “Field Day Showcase” was held this week at a Crown Castle tower site located in Gainesville, Virginia, near Washington, D.C., educating representatives of federal government agencies, industry and media with drone flight demonstrations.
Additionally, UAS (or drone) and aviation subject matter experts discussed the impact that drones are having on the wireless industry and how the regulatory environment can be improved to facilitate the growth of drown use in the future.
“We wanted to bring people together to showcase the potential of drones as talk about the regulatory challenges that still may exist,” said Todd Schlekeway, NATE CEO. “We need to get drones to scale in our industry. As the regulatory environment gets better, on the heels of the FAA reauthorization and the training gets better, drones will continue to scale in our industry.”
ETAK Systems; Talon Aerolytics; Ehresmann Engineering; and B+T Group, conducted the demonstrations that showed applications and use cases for drones from the perspectives of wireless carriers, vertical realtors, contractors and technicians in real time directly from the tower-site.
“The FAA plays a major role in the increased use of drones through regulation and the ease at which waivers are available,” Schlekeway said. “But industry also plays a major role through its vetting processes to clear companies to fly drones at their sites.”
The idea for the Field Day Showcase was formed at the NATE UAS Summit in Detroit last August as an opportunity to educate government on the challenges of flying drones next to towers and pilot training that is needed.
“The timing of this UAS Showcase event could not have been better given the fact that it was held in the immediate aftermath of the passing of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 legislation,” stated NATE UAS Committee Chairman Jimmy Miller. “The showcase enabled influential stakeholders from both the public and private sectors the platform to witness first-hand the power of the drone and facilitate discussions that will ultimately help get commercial UAS operations to scale in our diverse industry.”
NATE Lobbies Congress, FCC
The Field Day Showcase was one day out of a busy week for NATE as it paid visits to Congress, including representatives of the Senate Commerce Committee, the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the House Aviation Subcommittee, the House Natural Resources Committee on Federal Lands.
“Our topics of discussion include workforce development and the need for more workers; how private industry and public entities can form partnerships, safety is always a major component,” Schlekeway said. “Streamlining deployment is always a big part of our agenda, because it speeds work to our members. Spectrum access for the carriers also gives our companies work.”
Accompanying Schlekeway on the Hill visits include Jim Goldwater, NATE; Jim Tracy, Legacy Telecommunications; Jimmy Miller, MillerCo; John Paul Jones, Tower & Turbine Technologies; and Shama Ray, Above All Tower Climbing.
NATE today has unveiled a video entitled “Be Your Brother’s Keeper” that focuses on the importance of the planning, procedures, equipment and training necessary to perform a successful tower rescue. The video was unveiled as part of Volume 3 of the Association’s popular Climber Connection series.
The video includes an interview with an experienced industry safety instructor walking through a rescue scenario and discussing the measures that must be planned for and implemented in order to successfully perform a rescue of a technician working on a communications tower. The video also includes live mock demonstrations highlighting different rescue options and techniques available to utilize by trained personnel working at a tower site.
“It is paramount that all tower crews working in the industry receive consistent rescue training and refresher training in accordance with the NATE Tower Climber Training Standard guidelines,” said Denise Frey from D&A Construction Management, Inc. in Branford, Connecticut. “Today’s tower technicians are the first responders when it comes to performing a potential rescue of their fellow co-workers on a tower. This NATE video does a great job of providing an overview of the important elements that lead to a safe and successful rescue,” added Frey.
Click HERE to watch the Tower Rescue video. NATE encourages tower technicians and industry stakeholders to actively participate in this campaign by posting the video on their respective social networking platforms using the hashtag #ClimberConnection. NATE also encourages industry workers to share their comments on the video through social interaction on the Association’s Facebook and Twitter pages.
The Climber Connection Volume 3 campaign was developed by the NATE Member Services Committee in conjunction with the NATE Safety & Education Committee and is designed to provide specific resources and communicate the Association’s message directly to the industry’s workforce.
Visit HERE to watch the NWSA Certification, Super Bowl LII Hype, NATE UNITE 2018 Recap and Dropped Object Prevention videos that were previously released as part of the Volume 3 edition of the Climber Connection Video Series.
The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) recently hosted a successful inaugural Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Summit in the Motor City of Detroit, Michigan. The high-level, 2-day strategic planning event was attended by participants representing the most prominent companies in the wireless and drone industries.
During the NATE UAS Summit, attendees received an update from the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) UAS Integration Office. Stakeholders also listened to presentations at the event highlighting the evolving nature of drone utilization from a wireless carrier, vertical realtor, contractor and tower technician perspective.
NATE hosted the UAS Summit in order to help scale UAS operations in the industry and take advantage of the many benefits associated with this technology. At the event, the following working groups were established in order to foster collaboration between participants and continue building on the momentum that was established:
NATE also plans to host a UAS Operations “Show and Tell” field day at a communications tower site near the Washington, D.C. beltway in early October with invited stakeholders from federal government agencies, Capitol Hill and the industry.
“I would like to thank all of the participants and companies who were represented at our inaugural UAS Summit,” stated NATE UAS Committee Chairman Jimmy Miller from MillerCo, Inc. “Even though the Motor City was the birthplace of the automotive industry, due to NATE’s leadership at the Summit, it quickly became the site of innovation for the commercial utilization of drones in the wireless industry,” added Miller.
“The communications tower industry is tailor made for the commercial utilization of drones and it was great to see NATE assemble such a talented group of participants who will be instrumental in developing industry-specific standards and a graduated level of training requirements governing UAS operations,” said NATE UAS Committee Vice Chairman Bryan McKernan from Consortiq. McKernan was officially appointed as Vice Chairman of the NATE UAS Committee at the conclusion of the Summit.
NATE’s UAS Committee and Working Group participants have pledged to be a source of information by providing timely updates to the Association’s members and industry stakeholders as key developments emerge in the landscape surrounding Unmanned Aerial Systems.
On Wednesday, August 22 at 10:00 a.m. CDT, Kevin Kennedy, President and CEO of Warriors4Wireless (W4W), will conduct a live NATE webinar entitled How W4W and the Wireless Industry Can Team Up to Help Veterans.
This session with Kevin Kennedy will provide an overview of how:
Over 1,200 veterans successfully transitioned into wireless industry careers since 2014.
Over 50 industry hiring partners obtain contact information for interested and skilled veterans free of charge.
In 2018, 100% of climbing veterans trained received job offers within 35 days.
The Veteran’s GI Bill investment into tower technician training means hiring superb entry level technicians.
To register, please go to:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
View System Requirements
National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) and the Wireless Industry Network (WIN) will be hosting a Southeast Regional Conference on Monday, Oct. 29 at the Hilton Garden Inn Pensacola / Medical Center in Pensacola, Florida. The conference will focus on key industry safety initiatives and offer tremendous networking and professional development opportunities for attendees.
“This event will offer great educational and networking opportunities as speakers from all facets of the wireless telecom ecosystem will present programs on cutting edge topics,” stated WIN Director Scott Krouse. Presentations will include a variety of topics, such as NWSA Certification, safety procedures and best practices, culture and complacency, legal and risk management issues within the industry, a panel discussion on small cell siting and installation, and other topics yet to be announced.
John McGarvey, Southeast Regional Ambassador for NATE WIN, said, “The Wireless Telecom Industry is quite active here in the Southeast Region. This conference will provide the opportunity for company owners, tower techs, project and office managers and many others to gain insights on many topics within our industry.” He also noted, “This Regional Conference will help to provide our workforce with the tools and knowledge needed in our ever-changing landscape. There are no other organizations better suited to help with this than NATE and NATE WIN.”
NATE members and non-members alike are encouraged to attend this conference. The cost to attend the Southeast Regional Conference is $75 per person and includes lunch and beverages. Interested attendees are encouraged to register by completing the Registration Form on the NATE website. All completed registration forms and payments should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to the NATE office (8 Second Street SE, Watertown, SD 57201) by the registration deadline of Friday, October 19, 2018.