Drones: Too much, Too soon?

With drones becoming more and more popular in every day usage, a question that needs to be asked is: are they an incredible advance in technology or are they too much for us to handle?

drone-djiDrones are swiftly becoming a must in the current times (and possibly even more in the years to come) from flying around your local park, to Google’s internet drones, soon to arrive in our stratosphere. They can stay in flight for 5 years and beam down a localized internet signal to anywhere on earth. Not to forget the millions of other uses alongside this. It’s safe to say that drones are gaining a valuable place in society and an ever expanding market.

However are we as a society becoming too frivolous with these complicated and overly impressive machines?

In Britain alone we are experiencing serious problems with drones almost colliding with passenger aircraft. There have been multiple recent “category A” incidents which can cause catastrophe in a mid-air crash. One example back in September of a passenger Boeing 737 taking of from Stansted Airport only to experience a drone spanning 2 meters in length, 4,000 feet in the air only 4 meters away from the plane. More high speed incidents have occured in the Manchester area and Heathrow. It is illegal to fly drones over airports but some people clearly have not learnt this.

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Steve Landells – a flight safety specialist in BALPA (British Airline Pilots Association) states “When you’re flying at more than 100mph, the chances of seeing a typical, 18-inch wide drone are small. We don’t know if this is the tip of the iceberg. With the massive increase in drone sales, we fear we might see a dramatic rise in close calls.”

Pilots are also arguing for the drone creators to liaise with air traffic control to make sure that drones will not appear in dense air traffic space and furthermore, more technology to inhibit the possibility of drones flying to close to large aircraft in the coming future.

It is obvious drones will continue to develop and increase in number, predictably becoming a machine used worldwide for millions of different reasons. However, if they do I believe something important is to avoid chaos and initiate a plan to ensure passenger aircraft safety before the worst does finally happen.

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