February 20, 2016 2:52 pm
Updated: February 21, 2016 12:06 am

BCIT hosts drone fair

WATCH: Hundreds of people gathered at BCIT's Burnaby campus this weekend to discuss the massive growing popularity of drones -- for both commercial and recreational use. As Jennifer Palma reports, it's hoped the first ever drone fair will better educate everyone on the do's and don'ts of drone use.

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From film production to agriculture to real estate, drones are big business.

The British Columbia Institute of Technology is hosting a two-day event that brings together vendors, pilots and regulators to discuss the latest in the burgeoning drone industry.

Drone Fair 2016 co-organizer Declan Sweeney says he hopes the event will also address concerns the public has about drone technology.

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READ MORE: B.C. wants drone regulations strengthened

“The event is all about education,” Sweeney said. “A lot of times there’s a lot of negative media about drones. We’re here to celebrate the positive side of the applications of drones.”

The fair, which organizers say is the first of its kind in western Canada, will also focus on safety and regulations.

“There are safety rules because drones are aircraft,” Sweeney said. “So they fall under the same rules as ordinary manned aircraft.

READ MORE: Regulation, legality and safety of drones

“Anybody who is even contemplating doing something like this commercially in the future needs to know what the rules are.”

Various vendors will also be on hand.

Jon Ross of Heliwood Media says his company produces drone footage for various corporate clients, not to mention B.C.’s booming film industry.

“Pretty much every production now will have a drone pilot or a drone crew on set,” Ross said. “In the film industry, it’s huge. It’s a growing market, for sure.”

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