Drones: A Rising Menace To UK Aviation
Heathrow could be set for a turbulent week after environmental protesters vowed to shut the airport down by flying drones within its 5km exclusion zone to highlight climate change.
Even though they say nobody will be put at risk, the police disagree and stated they will take any opportunity to pre-emptively stop the protest from taking taking place.
As Statista’s Niall McCarthy notes, drones caused 36 hours of chaos at Gatwick in December. The airport was shut down by drone sightings and around 110,000 passengers were impacted by the disruption in just one day. In the UK, it is illegal to fly a drone within 1 kilometre of an airport boundary and 5 kilometres of a runway threshhold.
Data from the UK Airprox Board reveals that the number of near-misses between drones and civil and military air traffic has climbed dramatically in recent years.
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In 2018, 125 such incidents were recorded, an increase on 93 throughout 2017. In 2016, there were 71 while in 2015, there were only 29.