Skip to Content
Smart cities

New drone-meets-helicopter incidents may spur tighter airspace rules

February 16, 2018

Collisions and near-misses are renewing concerns about hobbyist drone pilots getting in the way of larger aircraft.

Two crashes: A helicopter crashed in South Carolina this week, allegedly because it had to maneuver to avoid a drone. (It may be the first drone-related crash in the US.) Elsewhere, the Federal Aviation Administration is investigating a helicopter-drone collision that happened last week in Hawaii.

Why it matters: Bloomberg points out that simulations by the FAA suggest that drone collisions are more dangerous than bird strikes to larger aircraft (blame the metal parts). Meanwhile, the number of drones being flown is quickly increasing.

What next: Currently, US drone pilots are supposed to keep their small aircraft below 400 feet, in line of sight, and away from airplanes and helicopters. But another Bloomberg article explains that aviation authorities are lobbying for tighter rules to avoid further collisions.

Keep Reading

Most Popular

This new data poisoning tool lets artists fight back against generative AI

The tool, called Nightshade, messes up training data in ways that could cause serious damage to image-generating AI models. 

Rogue superintelligence and merging with machines: Inside the mind of OpenAI’s chief scientist

An exclusive conversation with Ilya Sutskever on his fears for the future of AI and why they’ve made him change the focus of his life’s work.

Data analytics reveal real business value

Sophisticated analytics tools mine insights from data, optimizing operational processes across the enterprise.

Driving companywide efficiencies with AI

Advanced AI and ML capabilities revolutionize how administrative and operations tasks are done.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.