Drone flown over the Big House in Ann Arbor during season opener, 2 arrested
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Wolverine fans in Ann Arbor saw more than a football in the air during the season opener on Saturday.
The drone flew over the Big House just before 10:30 p.m. during the third quarter of the game with Middle Tennessee State.
University of Michigan Deputy Chief of Police Melissa Overton said two people were arrested and charged with a Federal Aviation Administration violation and a misdemeanor ordinance violation.
Drone use over the campus is prohibited without a waiver, according to UofM's UAS policy. The FAA has flight restrictions in areas where large crowds gather, like concerts or sporting events. Drones are prohibited within 3 miles of the stadium or venue.
In addition to sporting events -- hospitals and military bases and many of Michigan's coastlines and parks also regulate drone flights. Almost all of Ann Arbor falls under restricted airspace due to the number of schools, hospitals and airports.
In 2018, a violent crash on I-75 left two people critically injured. A medical helicopter was delayed leaving the crash scene because of a drone in the area, causing a life-threatening situation.
A medical helicopter in Idaho nearly crashed in 2018 when a nearby drone was being used to record a Fourth of July parade. The pilot was attempting to land when they saw the drone above the hospital.
A medical helicopter airlifting a patient in Dayton, Ohio, was delayed 10 minutes when it was forced to circle Miami Valley Hospital because a drone was in the hospital's airspace.
A police helicopter in Columbus, Ohio was forced to make an emergency landing after nearing colliding with a drone.
A drone in Wisconsin delayed the transport of victims of a violent highway crash to a hospital on July 18.
Ann Arbor's Michigan Medicine is one of the largest medical facilities in the region. Since 1983, Michigan Medicine has had nearly 60,000 patients transported by air for lifesaving care.
Authorities have not released the names of the two people arrested in connection to the Saturday incident.
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