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Department Focus: Pilots

Our pilots operate our ten aircraft for aerial acquisition projects, including flight planning. They must be up to date on weather conditions, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announcements concerning air space designations, and notices to airmen (NOTAMs). Surdex has 14 pilots, and they report to our Chief Pilot, Paul Briggs, who has been with Surdex for 6 years.

We asked pilots, what is your favorite part about being a pilot?

Cameron Lahay: Seeing our earth from a bird’s eye view is what I’ve dreamed of since I was a child. It is rare that people get to live out their childhood dreams, and I am glad to be so lucky to do so. 

Jeffrey Clarke: The view from our “office” in the sky is unique to the many different project locations where we collect imagery. The view outside is just as addictive as the multi-tasking required to keep everything in order related to our mission (i.e. ATC planning, communication between crews, etc.).