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Drone pilot sentenced to prison for accident

dronegolfA pilot has been sentenced to prison after the drone he was operating hit a woman.

Paul Skinner, owner of an aerial photography business, was convicted of reckless endangerment by a judge in US city of Seattle.

The incident occurred during the city’s 2015 Pride Parade. According to the police, the 45 x 45 cm drone crashed into a building and plummeted into the crowd. Two people were injured, one knocked unconscious as a result.

Judge Willie Gregory sentenced Skinner to 30 days in jail. The judge said he acknowledged that it was an accident but added that the pilot had "engaged in conduct that put people in danger of being injured".

It is believed to be the first time a drone operator has been sent to prison.

Concerns have been mounting in various quarters over the possibility of a drone colliding with an aircraft. The Federal Aviation Administration in the US received some 1,200 reports of possible collisions, but was not able to confirm any strikes.

It has, however, reported several close calls, including one with a Lufthansa jet approaching Los Angeles airport when it passed within 60 meters of a drone

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