Drone-Gate Chaos at Gatwick Might Have Been an 'Inside Job' Says Source

Drone-Gate Chaos at Gatwick Might Have Been an 'Inside Job' Says Source

A source is being reported in British newspaper the Evening Standard to have said that the drone incident before Christmas last year that caused havoc, was actually an inside job by a disgruntled employee.

That's almost undoubtedly the coolest title and subtitle I've ever written, though "inside job" does seem a somewhat grandiose term for the alleged crime. Some of you may remember that late last year, Gatwick Airport in the U.K ground to a halt during the Christmas rush because of reports that a drone was flying within the grounds. With terrorism being the knee-jerk response for anything untoward these days, flights were delayed or canceled, affecting over 1,000 flights and 140,000 passengers. Hi-tech gear and a wealth of police officers were deployed to tackle it.

A source now claims that the police are under the impression that this drone pilot worked at Gatwick Airport and was a "disgruntled employee". The evidence for this notion is that "[the drone pilot] knew the blind spots for it, where it could not be 'hit'. It was clearly someone with really good knowledge of Gatwick, someone who had worked there," said the source.

This is certainly possible, but is it likely? I have my doubts. In fact, doubts that several people have also voiced. That is, that a drone was there at all. Despite military grade anti-drone and drone detection equipment, a litany of furious passengers with camera phones in a building which is primarily made of giant windows, and police on red alert, no drone was ever captured, photographed, or even verifiably detected.

So what do you think? Was this Gatwick employee-cum-artisan drone pilot having his revenge on his employer and 140,000 passengers with such expert execution he has evaded all detection and prosecution? Or was the original report just a hoax?

Lead image by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi via Pexels.

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5 Comments

Simon Patterson's picture

I really wonder if there was a drone at all. The recording of the reports of a drone may have been a miscommunication or misunderstanding, or may have been deliberate foul play by someone who fabricated reports of a sighting.

But I don't think it is plausible that an industrial sized drone terrorised an airport for over a day, and none of the plane spotters with their telephoto lenses saw it.

We don't even seem to have any eyewitness accounts from anyone with a name and a face, just a record of "reports" of a drone. I would expect lots of eyewitness accounts by people, given how many people frequent airports and their surrounds.

So I say there was probably never a drone at all, just a report that was either mistakenly or deliberately fabricated.

Well... I'm not a drone pro. That's why I'd ask - how many minutes can fly a drone? Would it be enough to disrupt airport operations for several days? If it is not about minutes - where it recharged? How it entered airport airspace unnoticed?

William Faucher's picture

About 20 minutes, on average, per battery. Smaller ones fly for about 15 minutes.

Rob Mitchell's picture

Didn't see that one coming, much.

My theory ('and it is mine') is that it's actually Romulans with cloaking technology.

All these years, Star Trek led us to believe they are the same size as us... but, no, they're much smaller.