As an expert warns ‘most of the world’s airports and leading destinations remain vulnerable to criminal or rogue mayhem’, will lessons be learned from the London airports’ drone shutdowns?
Was it a bird? It certainly wasn’t a plane and unlikely it was a caped super hero. The belief is that while drone activity initially closed Gatwick Airport at one of the busiest travel periods late last year ahead of the seasonal winter holidays, investigators have subsequently claimed that the numerous sightings over the London airport that kept it closed may have been exaggerated.
The UK Government has proclaimed the deployment of military technology that permitted Gatwick to safely re-open and safeguard flying at UK airports proved premature when Heathrow was forced to suspend departures earlier this month after a drone was allegedly sighted close to its northern runway.
The potential impact of drone activity on commercial aviation is clear and just ahead of the Gatwick closure, Mexican authorities were investigating whether a drone slammed into a Boeing 737 of Aeromexico as the aircraft approached its destination in Tijuana, Mexico, on the US border, causing damage to the airframe. The aircraft was able to land safely, but the dangers are clear and while most nations prohibit drones from flying in proximity to airports, concerns are growing as millions of the devices enter public hands.
An industry expert claims that virtually every one of the world’s commercial airports and leading destinations currently remain vulnerable to criminal abuse or ‘rogue’ operation of drone technology. Alongside the “shock wake-up call” from the chaos at Gatwick Airport and more recently at Heathrow, he highlights an exploding drone incident in Yemen as another example of the dangers.
READ MORE – via The Blue Swan Daily: As an expert warns ‘most of the world’s airports and leading destinations remain vulnerable to criminal or rogue mayhem’, will lessons be learned from the London airports’ drone shutdowns?