There’s nothing like getting an indignant offended local with an agenda to generate a good headline in the news. This time it’s the turn of Julia Napier, secretary of Friends of the Roman Road and Fleam Dyke, who told the BBC that she was “horrified” that Amazon drones might fly across the countryside.
Apparently the drones have been spotted flying over the dyke and could possibly upset countryfolk on their walks. They’ve also been spotted from the Cambridge Aero Club who have apparently been flying full size manned planes in the area for over 85 years. One imagines with the vitriol being directed at Amazon drones that they must be much noisier than the fabulously equipped Cessna 172SPs that the Aero Club uses.
Of course we all know that drones aren’t going to work well in the city with buildings close together and nowhere safe to land. They’ll work best in open countryside where consumers have lovely well kept lawns for landing zones. Those same country dwellers who complain about the drones are probably the next door neighbours of those who will benefit the most.
Of course noise pollution in the countryside isn’t something anyone would be in favour of but how noisy are the drones, how frequently will they be flying past and how low when they’re at cruising altitude?
Whilst writing this I can hear a light aircraft overhead and I’m inside my house, would I be able to hear a drone and how much disturbance would it cause? I guess that’s the whole point of testing and why the CAA have given Amazon permission to run tests in a relatively quiet area of the Cambridgeshire countryside.
In other news the Daily Mail has much more scary concerns with the thought that Amazon’s drones could be hijacked and used by terrorists.