DSLR picture of a Drone Silhouette Flying At Sunset by a beautiful summer day.A drone “narrowly avoided” colliding with a plane preparing to land in severe weather, the UK Airprox Board (UKAB) has said.
The Boeing 737 had been flying at about 6,000ft over Derby when the drone passed it at the same height and just 30 metres from its wing.
The plane was preparing to land on a flooded runway at East Midlands Airport on the afternoon of 1 October, meaning the captain was busy calculating his landing in the severe weather.
He and the first officer, who was flying the plane, spotted the drone but there was no time to take evasive action.
Police were told but the operator of the drone – which was red and black and up to a metre in length – was never found.
UKAB said the drone had been “flown into conflict with the B737”, adding that this was a “situation where a collision had only been narrowly avoided and chance had played a major part”.
There have been 59 near misses between aircraft and drones in the past 12 months, UKAB added.
Steve Landells, former RAF and British Airways pilot, has said that a drone could cause engine failure or smash the cockpit windscreen.
Civil Aviation Authority rules say drones cannot be flown above 400ft or near airports or airfields.