The FAA says that reports of near-misses between drones and planes have surged since 2014, with as many as 650 cases as of August 2016. During that month an airliner narrowly avoided hitting a drone near London’s tallest skyscraper. Dubai airport has been repeatedly shut down by drone activity, and low-flying drones are increasingly disrupting fire fighting aircraft in the western U.S.
Sooner or later, those near-misses are going to collide...
What happens when a drone collides with a plane?
“We believe that most people who fly drones for fun or those who do so for commercial purposes intend to fly those drones safely,” O’Harra said. “Some people don’t understand exactly what flying safely means.”
Hobbyists are not allowed to operate drones within five miles of an airport unless they’ve received permission from airport and air traffic control officials.
Civil penalties for operating near an airport can range up to a fine of $27,500, according to an FAA official.
The testing being done at DFW and other airports is only the beginning stages of eventually incorporating these types of drone-detecting systems across the country.