Drone incident Stories February 4

Madrid-Barajas Airport was forced to close on Monday for two hours when two pilots spotted a drone flying near the takeoff and landing area just east of the city center. The closure left passengers stranded, planes grounded, and forced incoming aircraft to divert to other airports.

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Drone incident Stories January 21

Earlier this month, a bushfire in the Perth suburb of Baldivis, Australia, didn’t allow firefighters to take advantage of aerial support for some time due to a rogue drone being spotted close to the fire. The aerial support was forced to hold off while the drone finally made its way back to the ground.

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Drone incident Stories December 17, 2019

The latest Airprox report includes what is understood to be the closest-ever drone sighting in the UK. The report was made by the pilot of a NetJets Bombardier that was traveling from Nice, France, to London Luton Airport on August 26, 2019.

The pilot reported seeing the drone 14 miles west of the airport, at an elevation of 4,000 feet, while the jet was traveling 200 mph. Allegedly, the 14-seat, £46 million private jet passed the drone within a mere 10 feet.

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Drone incident Stories December 6, 2019

An AIR7 HD helicopter was struck by an object, believed to be a drone, at 1,100 feet over downtown Los Angeles Wednesday night. The chopper had to make a precautionary landing.

At around 7:15 p.m., as the helicopter was flying over the downtown LA area, pilot and reporter Chris Cristi said that he and the crew heard and felt a bang as an object hit the tail of the chopper. ABC7 Eyewitness News reports the incident as the helicopter being struck by a drone, even though that has yet to be proven. The initial photos show significant damage to the AIR7 HD helicopter.

Update: it seems that ABC7 Eyewitness News has changed the title of their news story to: “AIR7 HD struck by suspected drone over downtown LA, makes precautionary landing.”

Update 2: NBC News reports: “Two FAA inspectors examined the helicopter this morning, the FAA said, and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) requested that affected parts of the helicopter be removed and sent for analysis. The investigation into the incident is ongoing.”

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Drone incident Stories November 24, 2019

Drone pilot Reuben Burciaga was fined $20,000 by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) after his fly-away DJI Phantom 3 drone landed right next to an active runway at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. The drone incident took place in June of 2018 when Burciaga wanted to take an aerial photo of a Ferris wheel. Early on during the flight, he lost control of the DJI Phantom 3. The drone then slowly drifted for more than two miles towards the airport before landing right next to an active runway. The FAA issued the ‘careless and reckless” drone pilot a fine of $14,700 that increased to around $20,000 after Burciaga failed to pay or appeal on time. We have included the original video of the drone flight that was uploaded by Burciaga below.

Updated with the original flight logs of the DJI Phantom 3. You can download them here.

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Drone incident Stories November 22, 2019

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) plans to shoot down drones near airports, as we saw in our story from earlier today, to “mitigate” the risk the unmanned aircraft pose to air traffic. The Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Federal Air Marshal Service would operate a Defense Department counter-unmanned-aircraft system, according to new plans. Two Republican lawmakers, however, protested against the proposed “Concept of Operations.”

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