SEATTLE, Wash. (WATE) — Space Needle 1; Drone 0.
Video of a drone crashing into Seattle’s iconic space needle New Year’s Eve Day is under investigation by the FAA. Two workers on the needle at the time of the crash were nearly hit.
According to CNN, the owner of the drone went looking for it after the crash, but security guards at the Space Needle had already handled it over to the police. The owner is now facing a $5,000 fine and nearly a year in jail for reckless endangerment.
“He was down below, apparently, with the controller looking around for his piece of machinery,” said Dave Mandapat with the Space Needle.
Mandapat said the incident could have been much worse. Workers were installing a New Year’s Eve fireworks show at the time of the crash.
“The problem is safety. We just want to make sure that people stay in compliance, that they really know how to operate their drones, and we’ve been fortunate that nothing more significant has happened,” said Mandapat.
The FAA’s drone advisory committee is scheduled to meet in January to explore drone regulation nationwide.