A dangerously worrying trend is on the increase, and that is of drones being flown near airports.
And now, the Manchester Evening News reports on how a drone device was just 50 feet from colliding with a passenger plane, that was coming into land at Manchester Airport on 27th August 2015.
In the last year an aviation watch dog has reported three, what it calls, ‘near misses’ in the last 12 months alone.
Drones are only permitted to fly at 400ft, however the bright blue device was spotted by the aircraft’s pilot, who said the drone was flying at around 2,800ft – that’s a whopping 2,400ft over the legal limit.
Sadly, the owner and operator of the device have never been traced.
As a result, the pilot is warning of the need for much tighter and stricter controls over drone regulations. The British Airline Pilots’ Association is also calling for reform, demanding that owners of drone devices ‘unlock’ their devices online, along with ‘geo-fencing’ whereby drones are prevented from being flown anywhere near airports and on flight paths.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, former pilot, Stephen Landells, and a member of the British Airlines Pilot Association, said: “The Manchester incident was very worrying. We want people to understand that these things are great fun but they also have massive potential to cause damage and injury. If one went down an engine of a commercial airline, it would almost certainly stop the engine.”
If the aircraft and drone had collided there could well have been disastrous consequences. Well, Mr Landells said, “Would it (the aircraft) crash? We don’t know. But because of the big lithium iron battery it could make the engine explode and anything could happen – bits of metal could poke holes in the aircraft.”