The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) announced yesterday that they have launched a full-on investigation after an incident occurred late last month. The incident occurred just east of Staten Island, New York and involved a civilian drone and an Army UH-60 helicopter.
At approximately 7:20 p.m.EST.on September 21, 2017, an Army helicopter and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), also known as a drone, collided. The U.S. Army UH-60 helicopter pilot reported the collision east of Midland Beach, Staten Island, New York. The helicopter sustained damage to its main rotor blade, window frame, and transmission deck.
The official press release report states that “a small piece of debris identified as a motor and arm of a common small drone, a DJI Phantom 4” was recovered from the helicopter. The NTSB was notified of the incident Sept. 22 and immediately opened investigation DCA17IA202AB.
Because the unmanned aircraft was a civilian drone, the NTSB is investigating the incident along with the U.S. Army and other government agencies. Both the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and civilian drone manufacturer, DJI, are participating in the investigation.
Investigators are currently reviewing air traffic control radar data, flight data from the helicopter, and FAA airspace and temporary flight restriction documents. Investigators were also able to identify and interview the drone operator, and the drone operator provided flight data logs for that specific flight.
Please stay tuned to UAV Expert News for updates on this ongoing NTSB investigation.