Military assisting after drone sighted at Heathrow Airport

Military assisting after drone sighted at Heathrow Airport

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

The military have been called in to Heathrow Airport after a drone was sighted on Tuesday.

The Metropolitan Police have launched a criminal investigation following the sighting, which happened at around 5pm and caused flights to be suspended for around an hour.

It happened just hours after new laws around drone use were announced, which gave police additional powers to seize drones and required owners to register their devices.

A Ministry of Defence spokesperson confirmed military assistance had been sent to the airport, saying: "We are deploying specialist equipment to Heathrow Airport at the request of the Metropolitan Police."

 

'Extremely dangerous'

Commander Stuard Cundy of the Metropolitan Police said “extensive searches” were being carried out around Heathrow to try and find the perpetrators.

“The illegal operation of drones at an airfield is extremely dangerous,” he said.

"It is an offence to endanger the safety of an aircraft; anyone found guilty of this offence could face a life sentence.

"We are deploying significant resources - both in terms of officers and equipment - to monitor the airspace around Heathrow and to quickly detect and disrupt any illegal drone activity; some of which are as a result of learning from the incidents at Gatwick."