A drone crashed into a commercial plane in Canada on Thursday, renewing the aviation industry’s worries about the growing number of small hobbyist aircraft taking to the skies.
A landing Skyjet flight was less than two miles from Jean Lesage International Airport in Quebec City when a drone struck the aircraft, according to CTV News. The plane landed successfully and “only sustained minor damage,” according to a Sunday statement from Canadian Transport Minister Marc Garneau.
“This should not have happened,” Garneau told reporters, according to CTV News. “The drone should not have been there.”
Garneau said that the flight crew followed emergency measures, ensuring a safe landing for the six passengers and two airline staffers on board. He added that it’s a “serious offense” to endanger aircraft in Canada, with potential penalties ranging from fines of up to $20,000 or prison time.
Transport Canada released in June interim safety regulations for drone usage, which stipulated that model aircraft may not fly higher than 300 feet above ground level or within 3.4 miles (5.5 km) of an airport. The drone in this case reportedly crashed into the plane at nearly 1,500 feet above ground level, according to CTV News.
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