Pilot claims he saw drone in flight path near Sky Harbor

- It is a growing problem for airports across the country, drones are flying too close to flight paths, and coming into close contact with commercial flights.

It happened this weekend at Sky Harbor Airport, and now police and city leaders are working together to crack down on the problem.

An American Airlines flight was traveling at 7,000 feet when the drone was spotted. The plane didn't have to make any maneuvers to avoid the drone, and it landed without incident at Sky Harbor Airport.

But it's a safety concern with multiple reports of drones getting too close to planes at airports across the country.

According to Phoenix Police, American Airlines Flight 605 was traveling from Milwaukee to Phoenix. While over the east valley and approaching Sky Harbor, the co-pilot spotted a black and yellow three prop drone around 100 feet from the plane. 

"It's incredible scary," said James Holmes with the Phoenix Police Department.

Holmes says it's a major safety concern, and he's asking those flying drones to fly them responsibly.

"Would you really want to subject the pilots and passengers, and out citizens on the ground to something like that, and the answer, of course, is no," said Holmes.

This incident in Phoenix is the latest in a string of drones being spotted near busy airports. Over the weekend, drones buzzed at least three different flights arriving at New York's JFK airport. A small plane even had to dodge a drone over the skies of New Jersey.

The Phoenix Police, the city, and the FAA have a growing concern for the use of the drones in and around the city and the airports. Councilman Sal DiCiccio and Michael Nowakowski have been preparing an unmanned aircraft vehicle ordinance for the city.

The ordinance proposal will go before a committee sometime in September.

It seems like there has been a spike in reports, but the FAA says they receive daily sightings from pilots across the country.

Online: https://www.faa.gov/uas/


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