Drone crashes into Seattle's giant ferris wheel

If you've visited Seattle, you're likely familiar with the giant ferris wheel situated on its waterfront. The wheel is beautiful to look at, and is a prime tourist attraction, giving visitors a sky-high look at one of the finer sides of the city. Fortunately, none of those tourists (or others) were injured when a drone crashed into the ferris wheel yesterday evening, the latest in a growing number of incidents involving drones used in improper places.

According to report, a drone crashed into the ferris wheel at 4:45PM local time on Wednesday. The drone's operator has not been identified, a common issue given the difficultly of finding someone operating such devices. This is Seattle's second drone crash, and hints at a possible trend as the devices become more popular. This past summer, a drone crashed during the Pride Parade, hitting a bystander in the head.

In that previous case, the operator was identified and charged with reckless endangerment.

The FAA has been faced with the difficult task of regulating drone usage, but doing so in a way that doesn't excessively restrict hobbyists and innovation. Pilots have regularly and increasingly reported near-misses and close calls with drones while in the sky, and a growing number of crash reports are surfacing. A drone crashed at the U.S. Open a couple months ago, for example, but fortunately did so in an unoccupied part of the stands; no one was injured.

Recently, the FAA announced that it will require certain drones to be registered in a yet-to-be-launched drone registration system.