Video Captures Drone Crashing Into Woman's Head, Causing Serious Injury

Unfortunately, it seems it has finally happened: a drone has fallen from the sky and caused serious harm to an individual. A Quebec woman required an ambulance ride after being struck by a drone whose operator had been previously warned for his reckless flying.

38 year-old Stephanie Creignou was attending a 5K race at Lorne Worsley Park in Quebec on June 11, when a DJI Phantom 3 flown by Rosaire Turcotte fell from a height of about 10 meters (33 feet), striking her in the head with a velocity of about 11 m/s (25 mph). The impact with the 2.8-pound drone caused her to collapse into the arms of her friends and eventually be taken to a hospital, where she was diagnosed with whiplash severe enough to preclude her from attending work or a scheduled vacation. Turcotte noted: "I have no idea what happened. I have zero explanation."

VTOL X Drones had been hired to film the event and captured the fall and impact on video (see above). Drone Pilot Flavio Martincowski notes that he spoke with Turcotte beforehand, asking him if he had the requisite permits and certificates, which he did not, and warning him that he was flying too close to the crowd, which Turcotte dismissed. Turcotte was also in violation of the regulation that forbids flying within nine kilometers of an airport. This, combined with the fact that it was the first such incident to cause injuries in Canada, led the Bureau of Transportation Safety to assign an investigator, along with Transport Canada and the police. Creignou has taken steps to file a lawsuit against Turcotte. 

[via PetaPixel and TVA Nouvelles]

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14 Comments

Rob Mynard's picture

I think a similar thing happened in Aus a few years back when an amateur drone operator flew his into the face of a competitor in a marathon, and was subsequently sued by the runner for ruining his chances of a higher placing within the race.

Anonymous's picture

Oh thats not good. Sounds like this guy didn't care about following the rules and someone suffered for it. I hope this guy doesn't ruin it for the rest of us Canadian drone owners. What an idiot.

Anonymous's picture

And this is exactly why i`m against drones ..... 80% of operators did not follow the rules and when i`m informing them about it they just do not care and get angry .

Fritz Asuro's picture

Though I understand where your hate for drones is coming from. But, should you blame drones for it? Or maybe we should blame irresponsible people who owns one?

You must be against cars too? Basically, a lot of drivers don't follow rules too. (once in a while people do break the law when driving, even without realizing it)

Ah, yes. The old "guns don't kill people; people kill people" argument.

It's not an argument, it's common sense. Just like your spoon makes you fat....Rightttttttttt

Ben Perrin's picture

Fstoppers: where camera drones are evil killing machines but guns are glorious symbols of liberty! ;)

Alex Cooke's picture

Thank you, Pete. I'm absolutely a drone enthusiast, but I also respect the dangers they bring and think it's important to highlight what can go wrong if one doesn't act responsibly.

I've flown one of these before. These are awesome planes to fly plus that added extra bit of security with the parachute. Sucks for the owner to lose his plane in the sea.

Leigh Miller's picture

Ah yeah I heard about this recently...as I always say, it's the few idiots who ruin it for everyone else. That's why the government is going to regulate the things out of all useful applications eventually.

Andrew Pollock's picture

"Turcotte was also in violation of the regulation that forbids flying within nine kilometers of an airport."

Oh, the irony of capturing a drone (UAV) hitting a woman from another drone (UAV) and only one person is being called guilty of flying too close to an airport...

Alex Cooke's picture

The other party had the necessary permits.

Fritz Asuro's picture

This topic has been discussed so many times. I am not a drone pilot neither tried operating one, but what I can see here is there is lack of regulations regarding the manufacturing of drones. There are no safety standards in place even though that it has been clear that drones can cause injuries, or even death.

Just like any machine that has potential threat to users and public safety, ISO has been set to minimize accidents. I know that in the USA, operators needs license and permit - which in my opinion a good start. But still, it is not enough. It shouldn't be classified as toys anymore (radio controlled toys). Safety features must be installed (and not as an option!).

Felix Wu's picture

Drones should be banned in cities. One must apply a permit to fly and while the drone being in sight of the operator an independent person/guarantor should supervise on set...yes to avoid unwanted accident this has to happen.

Too many idiots own a drone these days. And there is no safety guideline in place. So stricter laws must be enforced.