Friday December 21, 2018

Drones Temporarily Shut Down Gatwick Airport

The Guardian reports that at least one drone shut down Gatwick airport for a few hours. 91 arrivals and 64 departures have been canceled so far, and authorities say the disruption will have a "knock on" effect. The police claim they've found "persons of interest" related to the rogue drone, but it sounds like they're still trying to figure out the specifics of the attack, such as how many drones were involved. Authorities are also claiming they have drone countermeasures ready to deploy at other airports, if needed. We've covered a variety of anti-drone countermeasures before, including EMR guns, actual guns, and eagles trained to swipe drones from the sky, and New Atlas has a good writeup on some of the more modern techniques. The media coverage I've seen mostly involves PO'd passengers standing around in Gatwick airport, so instead of watching that, check out a video of eagles taking down drones below:

Police are working on the theory there is more than one drone, although the last sighting was at around 10pm on Thursday. Speaking during the press conference in the last half an hour, Assistant chief constable Steve Barry said measures to tackle the threat include: "technical, sophisticated options to detect and mitigate drone incursions, all the way down to less sophisticated options - even shotguns would be available to officers should the opportunity present itself." He added: "In terms of motivation there is a whole spectrum of possibilities, from the really high end criminal behaviour all the way down to just individuals trying to be malicious."