While all of us have heard the dangers and potential consequences of bird strikes, Drone strikes might become a thing. While near misses have happened in the past, it was nowhere near as dangerous as this accident in Mexico.
A Boeing 737 departed from Guadalajara from Mexico and was scheduled to arrive in Tijuana. However, just before landing in Tijuana International Airport, a drone is suspected to have hit the aircraft. The strike to the nose has even caused damage to the radio and communications equipment inside the nose of the aircraft.
Most importantly, Aeromexico confirmed that the plane landed safely and nobody on board was injured. But even so, the accident has caused many people to become concerned. FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) has reported that pilots seeing drones in their path is rising. Pilots spotted them over 2000 times this year. Compared to last year, that number is up by an alarming 74%.
As commercial and private enthusiast drone usage keeps rising, that is why the aviation industry is ringing alarm bells. FAA has released a study that revealed that a drone strike could cause much more damage than a bird strike. Why? For the simple reason that they have metal parts that are much sturdier. Those parts can damage wings, windshields and other elements of the plane. However, not all drones are equal – small ones do not possess a lot of punching power.
Even so, as consumer drone numbers rise, so does the potential of a fatal aircraft crash. While laws also prohibit the usage of drones around airports. Regardless, radars struggle in detecting smaller drones. Because consumers purchase millions of drones every year, it is becoming hard to enforce rules. Law enforcement is finding it difficult to determine the pilots of the unmanned aircraft. Because of this, a lot of incidents are impossible to investigate further to determine the troublemakers.