22 Sep 2015

Drone strike blacks out Northland businesses

2:03 pm on 22 September 2015

Drone owners are being warned to keep them away from power lines after one struck a cable, blacking out 200 Northland businesses.

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Photo: Supplied

Northpower says a large carbon fibre drone - which was taking pictures of a nearby property - collided with the lines and caused an electrical flash that blacked out the area for twenty minutes.

In another recent incident, a drone struck part of the national grid near Waimate and had to be removed by experienced Transpower line crews while the line was still live.

The two companies said even small drones should be kept at least at least 20 metres from overhead electrical cables, and large carbon fibre drones with cameras should not be flown at all near powerlines.

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