It seems these days drone always come with a bit of trouble in their tails. The past few years the world has seen an increasing number of near-misses with drones and aircrafts. It is an alarming statistic, as one of these days, the inevitable may happen. A carelessly driven drone can risk the lives of people inside airplanes in mere seconds. A collision with a critical part of an aircraft can instantly send it crashing down.
That is why drones and their owners must follow strict rules and regulations when flying. This goes double for air spaces allocated for aircrafts. Drones must not fly in the vicinity of airports and other busy air spaces because they are small. These UAVs are almost always white in color, meaning it is even harder to spot while on the air. When on the air, and if spotted, the pilot will only have a few moments to react before a collision may take place.
This is why most of these near-misses involves spotting at the last second and being lucky that there were no hits. Drones must also be at view of its owner at all times. This is to prevent any errors on the part of the owner. These civilian drones are also limited to 400 feet from the ground. Surprisingly, most of the aircraft near-misses involve drones that are flying way above the limit.
An Drone Near-Miss:
In Port Angeles, Washington, a helicopter nearly came into contact with a civilian drone this weekend. The helicopter belongs to the US Coast Guard, and the crew on board were doing low altitude training when the situation occurred.
The helicopter managed to take evasive action before any damage occurred. The drone however appeared to be within 50 feet from crashing into the aircraft. Only with the attentive vision of the crew did they manage to avert disaster.
The event happened near Fairchild International Airport, another busy airspace that restricts drone flying in its perimeters. The airport had minimal incident with regards to drones, but this incident may be the start of something more. Drones are becoming more and more commonplace. They are popular with hobbyists and are available to the public through affordable prices.
The owner of the said drone in the incident was not there in the scene following investigation.