Derry Ryanair flight in near miss with drone

A passenger flight from Derry narrowly avoided a collision with a drone near Glasgow Airport earlier this year. it's emerged.

Monday, 25th July 2016, 5:02 pm
Updated Monday, 25th July 2016, 6:08 pm
Ryanair flight from Derry narrowly avoided collision with drone.

Investigators said there had been a “definite risk” of a crash after the operator of the drone “contravened regulations”.

The near miss - which happened back in March - occurred as the Ryanair flight was approaching the airport in Glasgow at an altitude of about 1,200 feet.

The Boeing 737 pilot had “no time to take avoiding action” and passed roughly 100ft above the drone while coming in to land,” said investigators.

A report by the UK Airprox Board, which monitors drone incidents, revealed the details of the near miss, which happened around 3.50 pm on Sunday, March 6, near Clydebank, Dumbartonshire.

A Ryanair spokesman said: “The crew of this flight from Derry, on approach to Glasgow Airport, observed a large drone operating approximately 100 to 200ft below the aircraft. The crew notified air traffic control and the aircraft landed normally.

“The incident was reported to local police by our crew after landing.”

A spokesperson for the British Airline Pilots’ Association has warned that the “potential for disaster is real and everyone must be alive to that risk - pilots, drone users, the government and the regulator.”

He added: “Unfortunately, the number of near misses between drones and passenger aircraft is increasing as the number of drone hobbyists also goes up.”

A spokesman for the Civil Avitation Authority said it was “totally unacceptable” to fly drones close to airports.