Embry-Riddle’s Dr. Kristy Kiernan, program chair for the Master of Science in Unmanned Systems, focuses on bringing together the safety culture of aviation and the “innovation culture” of drones, particularly given the promise of drones to benefit society by improving public safety. Recently on Forbes.com, she explored the risks that drones could pose to air travel.
Do small unmanned aerial systems, or drones, pose a threat to airplanes and airline passengers?
If drones end up where they don’t belong, they could be a hazard to manned aircraft. We have regulations and technology that should prevent drones from being in the same airspace as manned aircraft, but these safeguards don’t always work. Alleged drone sightings have shut down operations at Gatwick, Heathrow, Newark, Dubai, Sao Paulo, and Dublin airports, among others. On Feb. 21, 2019, flight operations at Dublin airport were briefly suspended following a confirmed sighting of a drone over the airfield.