An officer with the Niagara Regional Police had a run in with a drone on December 27th when an APEX x100 fell from the sky and nearly struck his vehicle.
The short-lived Christmas present is now in police custody and Niagara regional police are waiting for someone to come forward and claim responsibility for the drone, they also urged drone users to read over the Transport Canada rules. The incident happened just a week after Transport Canada announced its plans to better regulate the usage of drones to help combat reckless use and help protect citizens.
Under current regulations, operators should not fly their drones higher than 90 metres above the ground, closer than nine kilometres from airports or closer than 150 metres from people, animals, buildings, or vehicles, nor near highways, bridges, or busy streets.
Transport Canada also plans to update in the coming months regulations on flight rules, permits and minimum age limits for drone flying, something that the ministry says will help develop the rapidly growing field while avoiding potentially dangerous mishaps.
Believe it or not, drones falling out of the sky has became a fairly common issue. Shares of GoPro fell last month after a recall was issued for their Karma brand of drones just 16 days after their October 23rd release date. The drones were going offline and falling out of the sky. 2,500 drones are being recalled and GoPro has cancelled all shipments until the issue can be resolved. The company is offering a full cash refund for the $799 drone. The incident even landed the device a spot on mobilenapps.com list of 2016’s worst gadgets.
“We have moved quickly to recall all units of Karma and provide a full refund while we investigate the issue.” said GoPro CEO Nick Woodman in the recall announcement.
In June, a Quebec woman named Stéphanie Creignou had a Phantom 3 drone crash land on her head while minding her own business at a sports game. The drone operator worked for a company that provides professional footage of events and when he, Rosaire Turcotte, was interviewed by VAT News, he said he was unable to provide an explanation for what happened, claiming he “acted in the safest way possible.” But, upon further investigation, however, the man was found to not posses the proper permits required as well as flying too close to people. Transportation Canada believes that the issue would have been easily avoided if the operator properly understood operating procedures. Because of the injuries she suffered from the drone, Creignou claims she was unable to attend work for an extended period of time and says she had to cancel plans she had made with her husband to go on vacation.
Now that Christmas and Boxing Day has passed there is bound to be an influx of beginner drone pilots around us. Be sure to keep your eyes on the sky.