Nearly 2 dozen Central Fla. drone-related cases released in FAA report

Cases nationwide force warning Friday from Federal Aviation Administration


ORLANDO, Fla. – For the most part, drones have not caused any major incidents with planes, but they have become a growing problem for pilots.

Three weeks ago, a commercial flight from Orlando landing in New York reported a drone flying in its landing path.

Cases like that are growing, forcing a warning Friday from the Federal Aviation Administration:

"Because pilot reports of unmanned aircraft have increased dramatically over the past year, the FAA wants to send a clear message that operating drones around airplanes and helicopters is dangerous and illegal."

According to the FAA, there were more than 1,000 reported incidents across the country in less than a year.

From Orlando to Sanford, Melbourne to Daytona Beach, Local 6 News found nearly two dozen cases in Central Florida. In most of the cases, pilots report seeing the drones too close for comfort, sometimes within 100 feet of planes landing or taking off.

Sometimes, concerned citizens call police. In June, a man living near Orlando International Airport said a "drone would rise up out of the trees whenever an aircraft" tried to land.

The FAA said "unauthorized operators may be subject to stiff fines and criminal charges, including possible jail time."

In many of the cases listed by the FAA, law enforcement is notified, but it seems drone operators are rarely found and punished.

You can read the report by clicking here.