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Wednesday, 01 June 2016 00:00

Attack of the runaway drone Featured

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 Audrey Coumb,s with her neighbour Carolyn Crawford, shows the size of the runaway drone that crash landed almost right where the two women are standing in her Sherwood Gardens driveway.

           Audrey Coumbs was unloading the trunk of her car in her driveway at about 2 pm on Tuesday, May 24, when she heard a funny, loud humming noise coming from the other side of the house.

            As she began walking around her Sherwood Gardens home in Bobcaygeon to investigate, a bread-box-sized flying object came

suddenly buzzing over the roof at a terrific speed and smashed down onto the driveway mere feet from where she’d been standing.

            When it hit the pavement, it smashed into a dozen or so pieces, she told The Kawartha Promoter.

            “It could have hit my car—or it could have hit me,” said the shaken woman. “If it had hit me in the head, that could have been the end.”

            Audrey called her neighbour Carolyn Crawford, and while they were standing there surveying the wreckage—Carolyn with the largest intact piece in her hand—two young men drove up, looking for their drone.

            “They said they’d come from the trailer park where they’d been flying their drone, but I didn’t think to ask which one,” said Audrey. “They said they’d lost control of it.” They told the two women they get interference quite regularly, and when that happens the drone is just supposed to drop out of the air.

            “For something to be flying around in the air, and to lose control of it in the main part of town—that’s ridiculous,” said Audrey. “It wasn’t funny; they’re lucky someone wasn’t hurt . . . or killed. It just came swooping over the house.”

            Transport Canada agrees. While regulations on such rapidly-evolving drones are in the process of being updated, TC’s page on drone dos and don’ts says operators must always keep drones in sight and “respect the privacy of others—avoid flying over private property or taking photos or videos without permission.”

            It warns that operators should never fly their drones:

• Closer than 150 metres from people, animals, buildings, structures, or vehicles;

• In populated areas;

• Near moving vehicles, highways, bridges, busy streets or anywhere you could endanger or distract drivers.

            “I have a heart condition,” said Audrey. “I could have died of shock.”

Read 750 times Last modified on Wednesday, 01 June 2016 19:37

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