DONAN Granted Authorization for Commercial Drone Use


Donan one of two forensic investigation firms to receive FAA exemption


Media Contact: Rebecca Hall, DONAN Marketing Specialist, [email protected] or 800-482-5611 ext. 2084.

 Louisville, KY (May 19, 2015) –  Donan – an innovative leader in forensic investigations—has received FAA authorization to utilize Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, also known as drones) for aerial data collection applications that will assist the property insurance industry with claim inspections.  Donan is one of only two forensic investigation firms that received the first such exemptions on May 5, 2015. They join a handful of top carriers who have also received FAA authorization to fly drones.

“Innovation has always been a hallmark of our company and we’re ready to lead the way in applying the powerful benefits of drone technology to claims handling.  We’ve been researching and testing drones for years now and the FAA’s authorization positions us to utilize the expertise we’ve gained to serve our clients and the industry in some very impactful ways,” said Lyle Donan, President & CEO of Donan.

Donan’s exemption is for the fixed-wing Sensefly eBee UAV, which is equipped with an integrated 12.1 mega pixel camera and a superior software package that includes orthomosaic generation and fully autonomous operation.  The eBee was chosen because of its capabilities in commercial, agricultural, and catastrophe claims that Donan determined would be the most impactful for its clients.

Donan has been researching and testing drones since 2011 and has committed dedicated resources to developing pilot programs, headed by professional engineer and licensed private pilot, Matthew Kenney, Manager of Donan’s Technical Programs. “We have logged hundreds of flights and tested UAVs in various applications, so we feel really good about the implications this technology will have in improving processes and outcomes in the industry.  We also look forward to collaboration through our pilot programs which can assist carriers in better understanding how they can utilize the data and put UAV capabilities to work for them,” said Matthew Kenney, P.E.

A second drone exemption request is pending with the FAA that will allow Donan to operate its fleet of quadcopters in a scalable service.

Donan commented, “The FAA exemption is a new beginning in Donan’s commitment to leadership and expertise in UAV innovation. We’re building on what we started years ago and dedicating permanent resources to UAV hardware, pilot training, flight safety and operations, and data management.  It’s one of the most exciting opportunities our industry has seen in a very long time.”

Donan provides nationwide coverage from 59 offices and employs 266 professionals nationwide including experts in forensic engineering and component testing, fire investigation, and HVAC forensics.  Donan is also the first and only firm in the industry to utilize an unmanned ground vehicle in forensic investigations.

For more information on Donan’s UAV program, please visit or contact Duane Battcher, Managing Director, at [email protected].



Donan is a full-service, world class, forensic investigation firm with offices throughout the United States.  Their services include forensic engineering, fire investigation, component testing and HVAC investigation.

Since 1947, Donan’s expert investigators have utilized a rewind approach to research incidents, reconstruct events and reveal causes.  Their mission is to provide conclusive, unbiased and accurate forensic investigation services with the fastest turnaround time and best customer service in the industry.



Share this Post