Drone Crash Knocks out Power to 1,600 in Mountain View

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Jun 11, 2017.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    Some guy, who may still be on the loose, crashed his drone into a high-voltage wire earlier this week in Mountain View, resulting in “tens of thousands of dollars in damage and knocking out power to roughly 1,600 people for about two hours.” Rules for drone operation include not flying them near obstacles, but apparently, not everyone got the memo (or simply don’t care). The suspect reportedly has white hair, which is sure to narrow the hunt down…

    “The FAA has rules and regulations in place to prevent this exact type of incident from happening,” said Mountain View police spokeswoman Katie Nelson. “We simply ask that people comply with the rules and that they operate drones safely and sensibly.” The outage impacted City Hall and the library, the latter of which was evacuated out of an abundance of caution, police said. Power was restored to all 1,600 Pacific Gas & Electric Co. customers just after 11 p.m., but repairs were not completed until early Friday. “Drones are fun until someone flies one into high-voltage power lines, causing 1,600 people in my neighborhood to lose power,” Google software engineer Adrienne Porter Felt said in a tweet.
     
  2. SixFootDuo

    SixFootDuo [H]ardness Supreme

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    I'm sure the guy would really rather just have his drone back and have not caused all this trouble. There was never any malicious intent.
     
  3. Obi_Kwiet

    Obi_Kwiet 2[H]4U

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    I don't understand how a drone could cause that much damage. The cables are far to large to physically cut, and birds are easily the same size.
     
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  4. auntjemima

    auntjemima [H]ardness Supreme

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    Birds =! Drones.
     
  5. Etherton

    Etherton Will Bang for Poof

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  6. Jim Kim

    Jim Kim 2[H]4U

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    With a roll of toilet paper and some duct tape I could have that drone flying again in no time.
     
  7. HeadRusch

    HeadRusch [H]ard|Gawd

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    Since we're SWAGging here, I'm assuming the drone caused an immediate short (those lines aren't insulated so anything that touches mains lines is usually a bright, catastrophic arc to doomsville) due to the voltages involved.... which probably caused the LiPo battery to immediately explode, which probably caused the gear to trip and then the cage ratcheted its way down and, boom, mousetrap. Simple, really.
     
  8. dr_drift

    dr_drift Limp Gawd

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    Found him. Where's my reward?

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ [H]ardForum Junkie

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    city hall and the library?

    so no one noticed.

    it's a meh news deh.
     
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  10. Chupachup

    Chupachup Limp Gawd

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    [​IMG]

    Can he NOT stay out of trouble?!
     
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  11. Tsumi

    Tsumi [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Could say the same thing about most people that get into car accidents. Regardless of intent, damage was done and someone has to be accountable for it.
     
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  12. MrE

    MrE 2[H]4U

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    Are we sure that is a drone? Something looks off if you take a closer look.
     
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  13. DCookSta

    DCookSta [H]ard|Gawd

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    This does look strange. Looks like some feathers or something in there. Maybe it's Laserbeak.
     
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  14. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics I don't get it

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    Wow can't fly within 5 miles of an airport? That pretty much rules out flying a drone most places in South San Francisco, San Bruno, and Millbrae due to where SFO is located, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, San Jose are off limits too due to Moffet Field and SJC, a good part of the east bay too due to the airport.

    When the hell did the 5 mile rule come into play? I thought it was mostly altitude restrictions.
     
  15. Viper16

    Viper16 [H]ard|Gawd

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    If he had his FAA identification on it, I bet he hoped it got lit on fire. I am sure it was a accident, but damn, people gotta start using their heads.
     
  16. If I crash my car into someones house/business or car, I would want my car back as well, but that does not absolve me of responsibility, and leaving without reporting it or paying for it, makes it a crime, that is where things go down hill. Myself, even before the FAA stuff came out and I flew drones, I had insurance on mine and I only did it for personal use, insurance (at the time at least) was ungodly cheap, a number of member sites offered insurance as a part of paid membership, covered up to $1 million in damages. If you choose not to do this and cover yourself and then go and fly in high risk areas, you should be ready for what might happen.

    Would really need to know the drone and what it hit. I can't tell from the photos, people also stated they saw someone flying a drone in the area, no one said they saw it hit the lines, only that it crashed. Most cases like this the cost of damages or repairs tend to get inflated, though it is possible, depending on the situation.
     
  17. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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    you can fly within 5 miles of an airport with proper notification. Proper notification consists of contacting the control tower at the nearby airports and telling them where and what you will be flying, and when and for how long. Note, this is a notification. You do not need to ask permission.
     
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  18. Exavior

    Exavior [H]ardForum Junkie

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    If you go out by the road, dig a hole to bury a fence post and cut through a multiple 288 fibers because you failed to call for a locate before you dig, you are going to get a very heavy bill for the damaged you caused. It doesn't matter if there was malicious intent here or not, he was flying in an area he shouldn't have been then and caused damage as the result of his action. Like others said, if you crash your car into to something you are still responsible for the damage.
     
  19. Biznatch

    Biznatch 2[H]4U

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    Sorry but that sounds like a load of crap. I SERIOUSLY doubt you could give someone a drone to play around high powered lines with the explicit goal of taking down the grid, and have them accomplish the task... Those wires are huge, and you could hit it full speed with the props and it would just go up in smoke and fall out of the sky.
     
  20. Exavior

    Exavior [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Who said that the intent was to cause damage?
     
  21. Biznatch

    Biznatch 2[H]4U

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    Uh, no one? I'm saying I don't believe it was possible to do with a drone, even if you were only using it to try and take down a high powered line..... Those things are made to handle more than some crappy little drone flying around....
     
  22. Verge

    Verge [H]ardness Supreme

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    Well there's these big fucking metal things with innocent people involved landing at said airports. Losing an engine/pilot during takeoff or landing could be catastrophic.

    Greatly beneficial to the tower to know where you are operating so they can route accordingly.