Date 7.05.2024

Meet the Team: Walt Brozowski

Posted By: Coker Law

Walt served in the United States Marine Corp until 1985. He worked a few odd jobs over the next few years before joining Coker Law in 1988 as the firm investigator. He investigates many various types of claims, but one particular passion of his is the use of drones.

He figured out early on in his career that aerial photos can make all the difference in a case -- particularly at crash sites, where roadway evidence such as skid marks, vehicle gouges, and crash debris tell a story.

Coker Law has been utilizing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for investigations since 2015 and regularly uses five different drones. These vary in capability and purpose, but none are inexpensive, with the cheapest coming in at around $500 and going on up from there. On average, a good system is several thousand dollars.

Due to the potential dangers involved in flying drones, a commercial operator must become certified through the FAA to pilot a drone. The license must be renewed every 2 years but now can be done online. It’s especially important for drone operators to be able to read and understand aeronautical maps and know the class of air space of the flight plan.

However, just because we didn’t get drones until 2015 doesn’t mean that the firm wasn’t utilizing aerial footage! Prior to utilizing UAS technology, the firm would hire pilots to take investigators on flights to several different scenes over the course of a rental period – usually booked by the hour. Walt reminisced about petitioning Mr. Coker for a bucket truck at one point!

While drones come with their own set of dangers and risks, overall utilizing them for investigation work increases the quality of footage and is safer and more convenient than renting planes or buying bucket trucks!

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