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1/08/2017 9:25 am  #1


Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Safety and Skill to Fly Them.

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2017/01/09/business/09drones-1/09drones-1-master768.jpg



My dad got a drone for Christmas.
My dad lost a drone on Christmas.

— @miss_jordon, on Twitter

If this Christmas was the season of the drone, it was also a time of crashes, losses and tweeted laments. Social media is rich with commentary about fathers (major targets) crashing drones, girlfriends with tiny blades enmeshed in their hair (mothers removed them) and crying children whose favorite present went poof in the sky.

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 C a m @Cameron_fd
My brother got a drone this morning and he flew it at a park and the wind carried it off and he lost it. Merry Christmas.
5:38 PM - 25 Dec 2016
  1 1 Retweet   23 23 likes
“How would you like it if your laptop flew away?” Shelley Holloway’s husband asked her after he lost his holiday drone. Ms. Holloway, of Clawson, Mich., had posted a note on Nextdoor, the community-based social network, saying that “his Christmas has been ruined ever since.” (Apparently he didn’t like the ribbing.)

Most drones are harmless toys — albeit ones that seem to have a shorter shelf life than a Christmas tree. But drones, particularly bigger ones, can cause major damage and injury, especially in the hands of neophytes. Like birds, drones can be sucked into engines, creating a risk of planes being brought down. There is also a risk of drones themselves falling on people or their property. The Federal Aviation Administration requires that every hobby drone owner register with the agency, and insurance companies are girding for a wave of drone-related accident claims.

“We’re adamant,” said Scott McLean, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. “If a drone is seen in the vicinity of a wildland fire, we will remove our aircraft, which unfortunately can cause the fire to grow exponentially.”

The agency, known as Cal Fire, has adopted the warning “If you fly, we can’t!” It has a fleet of 50 aircraft and 31 million acres to cover. After a drone flew into what was called the Trailhead Fire in Auburn, Calif., last summer, Cal Fire grounded its aircraft for two hours.

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 Greg Hillis @gregorykhillis
Someday I imagine my son will think about this day, the day on which I lost his brand new drone somewhere in a tree, & laugh.

Someday.
12:31 PM - 25 Dec 2016
  8 8 Retweets   72 72 likes
About 2.8 million drones were sold in the United States last year, about 1.2 million of them over the holidays, according to the Consumer Technology Association, a lobbying group. As of Dec. 13, just over 500,000 people had registered with the F.A.A. Surely the rest of the owners will be stepping forward soon — if they haven’t already crashed their drones.

“My daughter got a drone from Santa, and its first launch took off and never returned,” Jim Stephens of Orinda, Calif., notified his neighbors on Nextdoor. “If you find a white and orange drone in your backyard or trees, please let me know.”

In an interview, Mr. Stephens said controlling the drone had been harder than he expected. “I should have let her drive it — maybe we’d still have it,” he said. His daughter, Iris, is 6.

Juan J. Alonso, a professor of aeronautics and astronautics at Stanford who serves on the Federal Aviation Administration’s drone advisory board, suspects that many drone buyers were surprised by the power of their machines — which hobbyists typically fly at 15 m.p.h., but knowledgeable users can nudge up to 40 m.p.h.

“Mostly people bought small drones, up to $500 or $600,” he said. “They’re probably novices who soon exceed capability of the drone or their own capability as a pilot. Most people have zero training.”

Although a drone can go “as high as you want,” Dr. Alonso said, the F.A.A. limits their altitude to 400 feet.

“These are very sophisticated machines,” he added. “We want to make sure people use them responsibly.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/08/business/drone-safety-risk-popular.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Last edited by Goose (1/08/2017 9:25 am)


We live in a time in which decent and otherwise sensible people are surrendering too easily to the hectoring of morons or extremists. 
 

1/08/2017 1:23 pm  #2


Re: Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

Money shot to the wind!

 

1/08/2017 1:26 pm  #3


Re: Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

It's amazing how little thought or preparation people put into sinking $600 in a sophisticated flying machine.


We live in a time in which decent and otherwise sensible people are surrendering too easily to the hectoring of morons or extremists. 
     Thread Starter
 

1/08/2017 4:25 pm  #4


Re: Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

And then there are those whose only thought is to get as quickly as possible the newest anything regardless of costs or sensibility.

 

1/09/2017 12:27 pm  #5


Re: Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

My wife asked me what I wanted for X-mas. I said one thing and one thing only....

A drone. 

She didn't get it for me. 

I'll ask again for my birthday.


I think you're going to see a lot of different United States of America over the next three, four, or eight years. - President Donald J. Trump
 

1/09/2017 1:32 pm  #6


Re: Santa Delivered the Drone. But Not the Skill to Fly Them.

 

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