Remember that drone discovered on the White House lawn? The Secret Service was looking into the matter and had said it wasn’t a safety risk, but concerns quickly spawned that such an incident could serve to further harm the already damaged reputation small-time drones have received — with all of it coming at the worse time possible as the FAA prepares to rule on drone usage regulations. This particular mystery has already come to an end, and while it was a harmless accident, the cause of it all further tarnishes the personal use of drones in some eyes.
It turns out the drone landed on the White House lawn as the result of some drunken fun. In the wee morning hours, an unnamed government intelligence agency worker — who was off-duty at the time — took to the sky with a friend’s drone, only something went wrong and the drone came down. The worker had sent a text to friends expressing concern that it might have gone down on White House premises, but then he went to sleep.
The next morning, he learned via the news that his drone had been found on White House grounds, at which point he notified both the Secret Service and his employer about what had happened. No charges have been made, and the incident has been described as a “drunken misadventure”.
Still, the incident has caused concern for those hoping the FAA will be lenient when regulating drone usage, and it has served to demonstrate how easily small UAVs like quadcopters can breach the White House grounds without any immediate or discernible detection.