Government issues alert about drones, passenger planes

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ABC News

Posted on June 24, 2014 at 6:07 PM

WASHINGTON (ABC News) -- The Secretary of Transportation reiterated the current rules for drones on Tuesday, pleading with Americans to keep the aircraft under control as the number of incidents is on the rise.

They are small, light, and inexpensive and sometimes flying too close to real aircraft.

One went just below a jumbo jet on approach to New York's JFK last year, and just weeks ago, a close-call happened near Tallahassee's airport where somebody reported a remote-controlled aircraft just three miles east of the field.

A NASA database shows 50 incidents have occurred in the past decade.

It's worrisome for pilots.

Hitting an airplane going 200, 250 miles per hour, if it hits the wrong place, it can come in through the cockpit through the glass and it can hit the pilot or the co-pilot.

That's why the Secretary of Transportation is warning anyone who buys a drone to follow the current rules.

Users are supposed to keep them away from airports and populated areas. The problem is, the technology is moving much faster than the rule-making.

The drone capabilities surpass the current rules. The FAA was supposed to have new rules last year, but that's been delayed this year, with tests across the country.

Privacy is also a big concern. On Sunday, a Seattle woman looked out her window and reported a drone was staring back at her. She called police.

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