Drone Worse-Case Scenarios

Much ado have been raised about the growing concerns regarding reckless drone piloting which keeps on happening despite warnings from authorities and self-policing of drone user groups. We can only imagine worse-case scenarios if  civilian drone users, whether trained or untrained, anywhere do not pay attention to safety and privacy rules.

Last month, it was reported that an epidemic of mysterious – and potentially disturbing – drone flights over French nuclear power stations remains unexplained despite the recent arrests of three young model aircraft enthusiasts in central France. The illegal flights by the tiny, pilotless helicopters, mostly at night, were initially dismissed as a nuisance. But a recent spate of five co-ordinated “visits” in one evening to nuclear reactors hundreds of miles apart has now placed the French government on high alert. Read more:

Whatever motives may be behind those drone flights near the reactors, “whether they were doing it for fun or they had some political motive is not yet clear,” still the thought of one of those drones might accidentally crash and cause explosions is scary enough.

An intrepid team from Brooklyn Daily went to check in on TGI Fridays’ “Mobile Mistletoe” promotion at the Sheepshead Bay restaurant, and it got bloody when a drone “flew out of control” and hit the paper’s photographer in the face. “It literally chipped off a tip of my nose,” said Benvenuto, using tissues to stanch the blood. “It took off part of my nose and cut me here, right under my chin.” Read more here:

It should also be recalled the near mishaps in the air involving commercial planes and hobby drones. What if any of those did result in a collision? How many lives, properties had been put at risk?

One article discusses the downside of commercial drones: aside from safety risk, the threat to safety. But amid the excitement over the versatility of drones, critics are increasingly concerned about their potential drawbacks in civilian use. For every UAV to watch a farmer’s crops there are neighbors who view its “wonderful” use as a nuisance and invasion of privacy. One issue at the heart of the debate concerns the minimum safe altitude of flight in the burgeoning airspace “public highway.” Read more here

Drone technology has tremendous civilian benefits, such as in search-and-rescue operations, agriculture, scientific research, and most exciting is its advantage in the field of aerial photography services. Yet, it also brings potential harm in the hands of anyone who carries no respect for safety and privacy, as James Davis, publisher of The Droneologist said.


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