Drone carrying package crashes in Gurugram locality; FIR against company

Source : PTI | A drone on way to deliver a package hit a dish antenna, triggering a scare in a residential locality here. The incident took place in G Block of South City 2 residential area around 5 pm on Thursday, police said.

The drone was being flown by Skye Air at a time when prohibitory orders were in force due to Chief Minister M L Khattar’s visit in the district and a case has been registered against the company, they said.

The RWA of the society informed the Sector 50 police station about the incident and a police team reached the spot.

In a statement, logistics solution provider Skye Air said an obstacle in the drone’s path prompted an “emergency landing in a nearby open area”. “Unfortunately, due to the uneven surface, the drone collided with a dish antenna,” causing the UAV to topple on the rooftop, it said.

In an earlier statement, the company said the pilot, after getting to know about the prohibitory orders, “attempted to make an emergency landing on a building in compliance with the law”.

Use of unmanned aerial vehicles (drones etc.) in Gurugram district was banned on February 15 and 16 in accordance with the prohibitory orders enforced under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).

Based on a complaint, an FIR was registered against Skye Air under Indian Penal Code sections 188 ( disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 287 (negligent conduct to respect to machinery), 336 (act endangering life or personal safety of others) at Sector 50 police station on Thursday night.

It has been told that the drone crashed due to some technical fault, the FIR said.

“We have taken the damaged drone into possession and are investigating. Action will be taken against the company in accordance with law,” said Inspector Jitender Kumar, SHO of Sector 50 police station.

A Skye Air spokesperson stated that the company has obtained all required approvals and permissions for drone operations along the approved route.

“During yesterday’s flight at 4.15 PM, our UAS sensors detected an obstacle obstructing the path, prompting an emergency landing in a nearby open area. Unfortunately, due to the uneven surface, the drone collided with a dish antenna, causing it (drone) to topple.

“Our team promptly responded, securing the site and taking necessary actions for safe retrieval. Subsequently, we conducted a thorough internal investigation and submitted comprehensive reports to both the DGCA and the Ministry of Civil Aviation,” the spokesperson said.

The company also said the information about the enforcement of Section 144 in the district was only disseminated by the Gurugram DC at 5.41 PM on X and other social media platforms. “No such information was provided to the drone operators beforehand. We received this information only after the incident occurred,” the spokesperson said.

In an initial statement, a company spokesperson said the drone was on its routine flight, and around 5 pm, “we received a notification on Twitter (now X) that Section 144 had been imposed”. “Consequently, our pilot attempted to make an emergency landing on a building in compliance with the law, but the building’s surface was not smooth, causing the drone to hit the plant pots,” the spokesperson said.

Skye Air entered into a partnership with an e-commerce platform this month for delivery of packages by drones.