7Skyforce dodges drone while reporting in SW Miami-Dade; incident under investigation – WSVN 7News | Miami News, Weather, Sports

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PEMBROKE PINES, FLA. (WSVN) – 7Skyforce was pressured to keep away from a drone that acquired too near the helicopter while hovering over the scene of a automobile that had crashed right into a Southwest Miami-Dade fitness center.

7Skyforce Photographer Ralph Rayburn and pilot Joe Mancino have been despatched to report on the crash, in the realm of Southwest 72nd Street and 157th Avenue, at round midday, Wednesday.

“We had been sent down to South Dade to cover a vehicle that had driven into a YouFit Fitness Health Club,” Rayburn stated.

Although a drone is comparatively small in dimension in comparison with a helicopter, it may well nonetheless trigger a tragedy. Mancino noticed the drone a couple of minutes earlier than 7News went on air to report the incident.

“We were 3.3 miles north of Tamiami Airport,” Mancino stated. “We arrived there roughly three minutes before noon. I saw a drone hovering there looking at me about 75 feet in front of the helicopter.”

Using the helicopter’s built-in digital camera, Rayburn took video of the drone because it hovered close to the plane.

“I was able to find it and zoom in on it and follow it for a short period of time before it disappeared,” Rayburn stated. “It was clear to us that the operator saw us see him, and that’s when the drone kind of left the area.”

Rayburn and Mancino consider the drone landed someplace in the realm, and regulation enforcement has began an investigation into the incident.

Federal Aviation Administration laws prohibit drones from flying above 400 ft. At the time of the incident, 7Skyforce was hovering at round 800 ft. A drone additionally can not fly inside 5 miles of an airport with out permission.

Drone sightings pressured the cancellation of a whole bunch of flights at London’s Gatwick Airport over Christmas in 2018. In January 2019, flights have been delayed at London-Heathrow after a single drone sighting.

Mancino stated a drone hitting a helicopter might show catastrophic.

“It’s a blatant disregard for the rules,” Mancino stated. “This time we were hovering. Most times, we’re in this aircraft going about 140 mph, and if somebody popped one of these in front of me, that plastic windshield is not going to hold up.”

“I don’t even want to think about it,” Rayburn added. “It has two souls on board, two human beings, and we’d like to go home every night.”

The helicopter’s flight ended safely, touching down at North Perry Airport in Pembroke Pines later that day.

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