You don’t expect to share airspace with a drone but if you’ve kept up with this blog you know that’s more than a possibility these days.
Melbourne, Australia-based photographer Simon Pollock was shocked to spot a drone flying near his Los Angeles-bound flight but not so shocked he couldn’t take a picture first to share with the world.
After reports of a drone hitting an aircraft in Canada, this story is right up there in terms of invasion of space by dronecraft.
While his plane was landing at Los Angeles International Airport, Pollock spotted a DJI drone hovering close to the craft.
In a Facebook post about the incident, Pollock said “Drones. All fun and games until you’re looking out your window on approach to LAX and you spot a Phantom just out your window (yeah a few hundred feet, but imagine if it… well…)…Some people are utterly stupid.”
He goes on to add in comments to PetaPixel: “Quick flight from SFO to LAX on an Embraer 175…We were on final approach and, being the typical ‘looker out the window’, I saw flashing lights of what I first thought was a plane. They were ahead of us and just off to the left hand side, headed our way – but not fast. It took a few seconds to realize the thing wasn’t a plane and that it was just hovering. Then the little flashing lights dawned on me — it was a DJI Phantom of some sort. It was most certainly a drone and it wasn’t far at all off the flight line. I’m not sure what a Phantom would do to a smaller jet engine, probably nothing, but it’s still a bit scary to think there’s some moron with zero thought for others flying around.”
Of course, it is completely illegal to fly drones within a five mile radius of an airport unless the pilot has explicit prior permission from government officials and local authorities.