DR NEIL Robinson, travel and tourism expert for the University of Salford Business School, comments as a drone temporarily shuts down Heathrow Airport, just weeks after a similar incident at Gatwick airport.
Dr Robinson said: “Here we go again, another drone incident at one the UK's busiest airports, this time Heathrow. Surely now it is time to implement serious measures to minimise such disruptions and travel chaos, not only do these kind of interruptions impact negatively on business and commerce in terms of revues lost due to flight cancellations and hold ups, it also has ramifications for security.
“Measures need to be implemented to block drone flights in the radius of all UK airports, the technology exists to do this, and implement minimum custodial sentences of five years for those who engage in such practices.
“Recent events at UK airports have shown how drones can be a menace to the flying public, and this will possibly result in the downing of a passenger jet if not addressed immediately. We have all seen what a bird strike can do, a drone strike would be catastrophic.
“Legislation is needed, all users should be licensed to operate, fines should be much stricter.
“Education is also needed and users should be mandated to register their drones on a UK national register.”