Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Drone vs Helicopter

This wasn't put together as a PSA on drones, but it's being passed around the aviation community as one. I haven't figured out how to embed it as a video, so let me know if the link doesn't open a video for you.


Having the audio on is not strictly necessary, but after the main sequence there's an explanation that you may find interesting if you like that sort of thing.

Drones are scary little things. You'd think the danger a small thing like a bird or a drone can pose to a large aircraft would be impressed on the minds of the public after things like US Airways Flight 1549. (I'm not going to call it by its nickname because that undermines the training and expertise of the aircraft designers, SOP writers, pilots, flight attendants and rescue personnel). But people go on thinking that anything in the sky above them is as impervious to as the moon to their interference, and they try to check us out. Transport Canada has a renewed campaign trying to protect us from them. The roads around my airport are marked out with bilingual and graphic "no drones" signs. I was going to say that people wouldn't throw rocks at passing cars, so why do they launch these things at airplanes, but then I remember a relative of mine getting picked up by the police for dropping rocks off a pedestrian overpass, so yeah, people would do these things. I can almost imagine this Casualty One episode inspiring people to attack helicopters.

I've reported drones twice in flight, both times while in the immediate vicinity of an airport, and both times taken very seriously by ATC. Just like playing with fireworks, lasers, or things that look like grenade launchers, even if you think you're not causing any harm, you do that in the vicinity of people operating aircraft and we're going to launch law enforcement (or more) right back at you.


Paul Tomblin said...

The link appears to just be a generic link to Facebook.

mguenin said...

(All the link did was open my Facebook page; I couldn't see a drone-specific video mentioned.)

Aviatrix said...

Link should be fixed now. Thanks.

Christopher Thompson said...

Hello there Aviatrix!

I believe I am a safe drone operator and I am always watching for aircraft. I'm a good 15 km away from the closest gravel strip airport. Occasionally we get a float plane nearby. I've restricted my drone to 150m (v) and 500m (h) and I don't fly out of vision. Do these precautions seem reasonable to you? Interested in a pilot's perspective.

Garrett said...

More hyperbole. Meanwhile birds continue to operate in vastly larger numbers, will continue to cause vastly more incidents, and are not going g to respond to signs near an airport.

Garrett said...

More hyperbole. Meanwhile birds continue to operate in vastly larger numbers, will continue to cause vastly more incidents, and are not going g to respond to signs near an airport.

Colin said...

Birds near airports respond to dogs and shotguns, both of which are used to scare them off. Trying to control one man-made risk even though it might be matched or exceeded by a natural risk is not hyperbole. Lasers can blind pilots. So can the sun when near the horizon. We take different paths when dealing with those two risks.

On a different front: If you fly a drone in the United States and currently (or would ever like to) fly a real airplane, be *really* careful. The FAA seems a little trigger-happy with the yank-your-certificate-because-you-flew-a-tiny-aircraft-the-way-they-don't-like thing.

Mike Eisenstadt said...

The link worked fine (at 7:30am Central). Here in Austin Texas we have had a spate of rock dropping onto the interstate highway that runs through time resulting in serious
injuries. The main perpetrator was recently arrested, a middle-aged man with mental

Paul B said...

If you hadn't realized it, this was the season finale for the BBC drama series "Casualty", set in an English hospital. The program has been going for over 30 years.

It seems the air ambulance people weren't too happy about it, and refused to be involved. Click Here for report