From the dept of I can’t believe this – Phantom in tree, an official investigation

A report to the Air Accident Investigation Branch, operator error, flew into a tree. Plainly a lack of flight planning as during a mapping task the operator failed to give enough height on a programmed flight to avoid trees.

One would hope the AAIB point at least one finger and investigate this operators training provider as they plainly did not receive enough training to plan the flight properly.

Full disclosure, I have done this as well though!

Struck trees during an aerial survey, Generals Lane, Chelmsford, Essex, 25 April 2019.

The operator walked the area for the planned survey and programmed the drone using Drone Deploy software. Flight parameters were set using the software and the operator allowed a buffer zone from the trees that surrounded the field being surveyed.

However, towards the end of the flight, the drone struck a tree. The operator stated that the buffer zone had not been sufficient to allow for the turning circle of the drone at the end of one of the flight legs. The damaged drone was recovered from the tree.

Commander’s Flying Experience: 13 hours (of which 13 were on type)

Last 90 days – 3 hours

Last 28 days – 1 hour Information

Source: Aircraft Accident Report Form submitted by the pilot

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