In Hawaii, a recreational drone owner received a warning for flying a drone. The incident took place in the Nanawale Estates, where lava coming out from the earth was visible. The reason for the citation was simple. The area – a radius of about five miles – was a restricted zone due to the ongoing natural phenomenon. Restrictions involved by foot, but it also especially emphasized on flying over the area. This not only cover airplanes and helicopters. Even small recreational drones are not immune to this flight restriction. This is because of a simple reason. Outside aerial activity may disrupt the ongoing emergency air service operations.
Eyes on the Lava:
The drone was mid-flight when it caught the attention of officers patrolling the area. The area itself had closed for the dangers within. From the lava, to the gases they emitted, and to the unsafe environment in general.
Some officers were apparently checking barricades when they spotted a red light from the sky. They investigated, and unlike airport incidents involving rogue drone flyers, this time the owner actually received identification. The owner was a man from San Jose California, who came to area specifically to use the drone for lava snapshots. The Hawaii lava incidents created a lot of buzz. It seems that a fresh photo from an aerial view of the incident was in large demand.
Amateur drone users can easily set up their drones near the area, take pictures, and be gone before anyone could find out. Unluckily for this particular Californian, eagle-eyed officers managed to spot his work before he could finish.
Without a permit, the drone’s flight to view the lava flow over the islands is over.
The thrill of taking a once-in-a-lifetime photo may seem too tempting to resist. However, a drone owner still needs to follow regulations. This goes double for emergency or disaster areas. Recreational drones from outside users may cause interference with work being done in the area. This may even lead to damages, such as loss of data, or simply a loss in time.