Flying drones can be dangerous, especially without training – which is one of the key reasons the U.K. government has introduced stricter drone regulations. Drones are fragile and expensive, and as this list of drone fails shows, if you aren’t careful, their lifespan can be cut short by everything from wind turbines to even lava:
1. Drone vs. Skier
Recently, we took a look at the role that drones can play in sport. For the most part, this footage is incredibly exciting, but this particular drone fail is a perfect example of when it can go wrong.
A drone nearly struck the Austrian four-time defending world champion Marcel Hirscher during his second run at the World Cup ski slalom race in Italy.
The drone, carrying a TV camera, came down and shattered on the icy slope just behind Hirscher during the race. Luckily, it didn’t affect his performance too much – Hirscher went on to finish second. Check out how much of a near-miss it was for yourself!
— NBC Sports (@NBCSports) December 22, 2015
2. Drone vs. Wind Turbine
Our second drone fail shows the moment that a 3DR Solo drone loses its battle with a wind turbine. As you can see from the clip, the footage captured starts out stunning – it’s just a shame the flight took a turn for the worst when the windmill blade clipped the side of the drone. Does the 3DR Solo survive the 400ft drop? Watch this video to find out!
3. Drone vs. the Ocean
This amazing video captures a drone’s last moments before it was hit by a wave and pulled into the ocean depths. It captured some stunning underwater, aquatic life, so maybe the flight wasn’t a complete fail – shame the £300 Blade 350 QX drone didn’t survive though!
4. Drone vs. Seattle’s Space Needle
When it comes to drone fails, you can’t get much worse than crashing into one of America’s most iconic buildings. This vertigo-inducing footage shows a panoramic view of Seattle while the drone hovers around the Space Needle, before suddenly gaining speed and crashing into the roof.
It was later revealed that the drone in question was subsequently handed over to Seattle police and the drone pilot charged with reckless endangerment. The crashed drone was found by pyrotechnicians, who were prepping for the annual fireworks display on New Year’s Eve, with one of its blades shattered and dangerously close to the wiring of the pyrotechnic devices. Watch the incident for yourself…
5. Drone vs… Lava?
Lava may not be the first thing you’d expect to read in a blog about drones, but the last of our drone fails involves exactly that. While shooting in Hawaii, photographer Erez Marom flew his £1,100 DJI Phantom 4 camera drone too close to the lava flows he was capturing.
As he was shooting, Marom noticed that the right side of the frame was slowly becoming darker. It wasn’t until he returned home that he realized that the plastic inside the drone camera had melted from the intense heat of the lava. Just goes to show that you don’t have to just crash into something to cause damage to your drone.