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Drone operator faulted in NY collision with helicopter

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal investigators say a recreational drone operator was at fault in the first confirmed midair collision in the U.S. between a drone and a manned aircraft.

That’s according to a National Transportation Safety Board report. The report says the operator was unaware the Federal Aviation Administration had temporarily banned drone flights in New York when his drone collided with an Army Blackhawk helicopter on Sept. 21. The U.N. General Assembly was meeting at the time.

The helicopter suffered minor damage while the drone was destroyed.

The report said the operator flew the drone 2.5 miles away despite an FAA prohibition on drone flights beyond the sight of an operator. The operator didn’t notice the helicopter on the tablet he was using to direct the drone until it was too late.

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