UK: Drone flown ‘directly at’ airliner, came within 80 feet of wingtip

UK: Drone flown ‘directly at’ airliner, came within 80 feet of wingtip

[Ed. – So, this is not good.  I’m a little bemused by the Board response, however.  It’s a study in contrasts:  on the one hand, British authorities think it’s overwhelmingly important to interrogate young children on whether they know any gays and can recite the gay-marriage catechism.  But a matter of clear danger to public safety merits only “disappointment” and inaction.]

An airliner came within just 80ft of colliding with a quadcopter drone after it was ‘deliberately flown’ at the passenger plane as it flew over Essex, an official report reveals.

The 74-seater aeroplane was travelling over Southend when the pilot spotted the remote-controlled quadcopter ‘very close’ to the right wing-tip.

An investigation launched into the incident recorded the risk of collision as ‘high’, in what is believed to be the first ever near-miss between a passenger plane and a drone in the UK.

The UK Airprox Board report into the incident, which emerged this week, revealed how the ATR72 twin-engine turboprop airliner was travelling at 1,500ft as it came in to land at Southend Airport when the pilot noticed the drone. …

The report revealed that it had not been possible to trace the drone nor its operators since the incident and concluded that it was disappointing that no one had come forward to take responsibility of the quadcopter. …

Concluding its investigation, the UK Airprox Board said: ‘The board were content that the AT72 pilot had clearly seen the quadcopter but, unfortunately, there was too little information available to make a meaningful analysis of the occurrence or to accurately assess the risk.

‘Members were disappointed that someone would fly a quadcopter so high on the extended approach path to an airport, and that no had come forward to help with the analysis.

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