This drone's-eye view of fireworks is the most beautiful video ever


“I’m going to cut across the axis and try and draw their fire.”


I don’t think it’s a very big deal, but I can understand why some might. Fireworks are damned dangerous, so the companies that put on the shows go to great lengths to mitigate the risks and keep the spectators (and operators) safe. they also have an enormous amount of very expensive liability insurance in case someone does get hurt.

I don’t imagine the guy flying the drone can make those same 2 claims in the event his drone is damaged by the fireworks and plummets into the crowd


The display appears to be in the centre of harbour/river, so I guess the chances of a blazing drone scything through the crowd are fairly slight. That said, this is the type of stunt that only an uninsured private citizen could get away with. Even if there is a special insurance policy you can get for drone flying, I’d guess this would void it :smiley:


Given the distance from the crowd, the risk is not what I’d consider significant. Most likely the thing would just tumble down (or plummet) into the water. Full loss of a rotor on a quadcopter can still allow some degree of control sufficient to controlled landing - but it is depending a lot on the controller board; “quadcopter rotor loss” on youtube shows more.

The crash landings often aren’t that dramatic; most of the structure survives and the camera often keeps recording all through the crash. Not what I would imagine as catastrophic impact. (Granted, there is no footage from those that got entirely destroyed, but the poor aerodynamics of the multirotors does its job in limiting the freefall speed so these aren’t that common.) (Todo: look at more crash videos! If nothing else, they are fun; in addition, one gets better understanding of the nature of drone failures.)


Agreed. The chances of a shell being knocked off course by hitting the drone and flying over to the bank to explode in the crowd are also somewhere between slim and none, which is why I can’t get excited about it in this case.

But a different show where the crowd isn’t quite so far away? With maybe 7 or 8 or 10 or 12 drones flying around in the (cue Archer) Danger Zone? And the possibility of some immature moron thinking how “cool” it would be if the drone actually did get hit?

Risk management will tell you that even extremely unlikely events need to be taken into consideration when they 1) can be easily avoided and 2) have the potential for disastrously bad consequences, such as the maiming or death of an innocent bystander .

I don’t see this ending well for people who like to fly drones


Oh, come on. The internet has given the know-nothing busy-body an inordinate amount of attention. Speculating on what might have happened from hundreds of miles away is worthless self-aggrandizement. I do wish the conversation would focus on this fact. At least we might come away understanding ourselves a little better.


I saw two different drones filming the fireworks that my former HOAs puts on every year. They were close, but not close enough to get hit. I’m sure with a decent zoom lens they got some awesome shots.

That was my first thought.

The second one?


Look at the World War 2, the success rate of the anti-aircraft artillery. And these intended to hit and had instrumentation to maximize the hit probability.

It’s not that easy to take down a small moving airborne target with mortars or unguided rockets. (Though, with low-altitude target and a barrage fire, you can take down even a fighter plane with even just a small arms fire.

For people concerned about drones falling off the sky after being shot by fireworks missiles, I say, get a hard-hat. And you can mount a gopro on it.


Meh. In my day we used to get similar pictures by strapping a Super-8 camera to a homing pigeon. And the video quality from the analogue recording was much better than anything you can get on digital.


You’re not supposed to use a camera to watch the rockets. The camera is SUPPOSED to go ON the rocket.


Oh yeah, if one of those quad-copters fell from the sky it might give you a little bump on the head. We are not talking about a Predator drone here.

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I am grateful that we’ve handled all the higher-priority problems in society that this has become important.

The chances of this happening - especially in this scenario where the display is above the water - are negligible bordering on non-existent. But if it did happen, you’d end up with a pretty bad “bump”. A hobby-grade FPV quad capable of this type of filming, complete with cameras and batteries, weighs about a kilogram. That much mass free-falling a couple hundred feet on to your head probably wouldn’t be fatal, but it wouldn’t exactly tickle either.

I think drone hysteria is as silly as every other variety of overhyped faux-menace, but we should at least be accurate in our criticism of it.


That is your life, man. I am just dropping a comment on a silly blog forum.

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Aw, shit, you mean they come in smaller sizes? Mine cost me $4.03 million :’(

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The video made in West Palm Beach, which has drawn more than 8 million YouTube views, was posted in early May. It was shot during the SunFest (huge music, arts and water festival onnrhe Downtown West Palm BeachbWaterfront) fireworks over the Intracoastal Waterway between West Palm Beach and the island of Palm Beach.

My first reaction when seeing this was “Wow, neat!”… Then my second reaction was “Hrmm, is this dangerous?” which was quickly followed up with “No, it probably isn’t”.

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