Reading this just breaks your heart and really makes me wonder if I shouldn't look into some kind of protection. Maybe the solo should come with them as well. Any thoughts or suggestions?
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People are severely injured, maimed and even killed on a daily basis due to accidents around the home. This is just another risky activity that should be executed *with caution*. It sounds like this person was flying outside of their home and in close proximity to other people... unfortunately, with the rise in popularity of multirotors more people are exposed to such threats until people start to understand the inherent risks with flying lawnmowers close to themselves and others. The message will sink in "the hard way". Unfortunately, cases such as this - involving innocent children - will likely lead to tighter standards being applied (such as all hobby drones being required to be equipped with propeller guards)... which might not be an unreasonable next step.
Richard, that was a one-in-100,000,000 bad incident.
If you are truly overwrought, . . . 1) flimsier props made from ABS instead of carbon fiber or carbon/nylon 2) prop guards
3) [get ready for it. . . ] just don't fly near people.
I mostly employ method #3
I stopped using flimsy props after I had two crashes when they broke in mid flight. Yes duh... don't fly near people. But it will happen more and more as more MR are sold.
Awhile back I saw these props that their claim to fame was they were quiet. They had a rounded mass on the tip. Seems like that could help by perhaps being more of a blunt impact as appose to being hit by the point of sharp sizers.
bumbers protecting propellers are installed by a number of manufacturers of drones by default.
It's up to the regulator to remove unsafe/ not-safe drones from the market
(US Trade Department)
I don't think prop guards or flimsy props would help, really. I mean, suppose that instead of cutting someone, it simply landed on their head from 100 ft? The fact is, a 3 lb (or 1 lb, or 5 lb) quad is a dangerous object if it hits you.
I believe in not flying near people, though I confess I have done so. This is a sober reminder to me, to remember that my quad is a flying lawnmower. This is very sad.
Having said all that, if prop guards WOULD work and would make it safer, I would consider them. But I would not want them to be mandated.
I have a child and I fly multies for more than 3 years now, my son Is four. I imagine what the family is going through as at 2 years age we had a life and death injury situation (not multicopter related). Multicopters are no toys with open blades, they cut and slice through flash and bigger props crash bones, once I've been testing a gimbal on a bigger machine on my drive way and got carried away, didn't account for the added weight and "touched" a fender of the neighbor car slicing right through the plastic. ended up buying guy a new fender :)
long story short. exercise caution as those things can and will cause extreme injuries and property damage. IMHO it would be a great idea if all multicopter manufacturers would put a paper warning sign on each blade similarly how they do with the the rotation arrows, especially RTF versions like phantoms, solo and others.
Good idea Artem.
I agree it would be even more dangerous to have one land directly on your head from a hundred feet. Not good! But I think it's probably more likely on average for people to get clipped with a prop.
I just wish there were options for the DIY drone to install on their own. Maybe there is but I haven't seen any.
Some chop saws and table saws have a sensor that detects if the blade touches flesh and stops the blade. I think it detects ground much like a GFI outlet installed in kitchens and bathrooms. That would be interesting if it could be incorporated in our MR's however it would seem that is so touchy a false positive could in the end cause more potential for personal injury that not having that at all. And last I checked CF and nylon aren't conductive.
Another thought is what if the props have a designed weak point near the hub that would snap off if it hit something? I know that's not perfect but if you've ever heard a MR crash into a bush or tree there are those dreaded couple seconds as it continues to hack away at the leaves and branches. If that's your body those couple seconds could be the difference between a few stitches and hundreds. But again... would the props malfunction thus causing unnecessary crashes / danger?
If a motor that is spinning suddenly is stopped by force doesn't the amperage spike for a second? Could the pixhawk detect this? ESC's have brake mode... could that be incorporated to be instantly turned on? If the esc's had a separate 'safety wire' that if powered up would hard 'break' all the motors if the controller sends it the signal.
I hate to be the guy that evokes a MythBusters episode. . . but. . . .
They addressed this in their 'drone' episode. Long story made short: only the largest drone in their quiver, with carbon blades, did damage to human flesh.
I understood this FoxNews story as "that thing can put your EYE out young man!!".
I would submit that the specific chances of eye injury are 1 in 10 million flight hours, with the results being non-life-threatening. Bad, but not catastrophic.
No, I won't be the first guy to have a drone sucked into an airliner intake, nor crash into a crowd of people.