Sussex Police are stepping up patrols following the Brighton drone incident

MORE police patrols are being deployed to tackle drone abuse following complaints of privacy invasion.

Sussex Police are implementing the move to protect beach users, following calls from women to raise awareness and do more about the problem.

A spokesman for the force said: “Increased patrols have been deployed to prevent similar behavior and identify perpetrators.

“Misuse of drones is a criminal offense under the Air Traffic Management and Unmanned Aircraft Act 2021 and investigations are underway into whether any offenses have been committed.”

The Argus: Stock photo of a flying drone with cameraStock photo of a flying drone with a camera

The incident took place on Brighton beach on Sunday August 14 when a group of five young women became aware of a drone flying inches away from them with a camera trained on them.

One of the women, who only wanted to be called Rebecca, said: “The drone dehumanizes the whole situation because there is no face behind it.”

The group said the drone was “lingering” on them and they felt they were about to “throw a rock” at the machine.

The women, all in their 20s, were concerned the incident might violate guidelines on flying drones as well as privacy laws.

According to Civil Aviation Authority guidance, drones should not be flown within 50 meters of groups of people. The guidance also states that when flying in public areas such as Brighton beach, people’s privacy should be respected in all shots.

The Argus: Brighton BeachBrighton Beach

Brighton and Hove City Council said: “We license drone flying for commercial purposes but we have no control over the recreational use of drone equipment.

“CAA policy is absolutely clear that no drone should be flown within 50m of people and should never be flown in crowded areas.

“Failing to follow these instructions would constitute a violation of safe flying guidelines for the use of drones and should therefore be reported to the police.” Sussex Police are stepping up patrols following the Brighton drone incident

Fry Electronics Team

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