As Wildfire Season Ramps Up, Nearby Drones are Becoming a Problem Again

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July 26, 2016 | Originally published by Date Line: July 26 on

Firefighters working to contain a wildfire in the San Gabriel Mountains of Southern California were temporarily thwarted this weekend when pilots for the Monrovia Fire Department (MFD) spotted a few private drones in their path. For low-flying fire-fighting planes carrying fire retardant and smoke jumpers, an errant drone could mean life or death for the pilot of any crew. As such, the fire department decided to temporarily ground all aircraft on Saturday morning. That decision can be a frustrating one for firefighters and residents of a fire-affected area, because there”s always the potential that the fire could burn out of control without aircrat flying in firefighters and equipment. The Montovia Fire Department acknowledged this situation in a post this weekend.

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