Man Faces Felony Charges for Flying Phantom Drone Outside Hospital

This is another one of those stories on people breaking the rules of best practices with drones that makes me shake my head. A fellow named David Beesmer, 49, took to the skies with his Phantom 2 Vision+, and flew past the windows of a hospital with patients actively being examined inside. People in the hospital, such as patients and staff, saw Beemer's drone. Beemer then went on Facebook and posted videos of his flight. He later apologized and said he wasn't thinking, but is to be charged at a later date.

This is just frustrating on so many levels. I have a Phantom 2 Vision+ and don't use it to spy on people. I do use it to fly everywhere and do happen to notice people doing interesting things in the process, but I respect individual and institutional privacy and property, and stay away from anything tricky or controversial. It's why I've flown radio-controlled devices for tens of thousands of hours without so much as a dirty look from others.

If we're going to keep flying our drones, we need to do so sensibly. We can't fly them around hospitals. We can't fly them past large private buildings and bask in the attention, no matter how great the view might be. What we need to do is advocate for drones to be treated the same way radio-controlled cars, planes, and helicopters are; they aren't that different simply because they have cameras.

You can take far better pictures with a basic DSLR or even a pocket camera like my  Fuji X100s than you can with an expensive drone, as cameras are actually designed to take high-quality images rapidly, non-stop, for hours at a time. Drones are not--at least not the kinds of drones that regular people can buy. We aren't the US government, and we shouldn't be treated like enemies of the state.

However, despite the fact that we shouldn't be treated like pariahs by people who simply don't understand and fear hobby drones, if we're going to keep our drones from going the way of the dodo, we need to make sure we're using them responsibly, which means we need to embrace best practices and fly with them in mind every single time we take to the skies. David, you should have known better. We all should know better.

With that said, I completely recommend the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ Quadcopter. My review of it is here, and you can buy it from Amazon here. Also consider the same kit along with an extra battery, case, and SD setup here. Extra batteries are here.


Hi! My name is Mike, and I'm the author of this personal drone blog. If you find the information on my flying drone review blog useful, you can shop through Amazon here.

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