As somebody who flies drones himself, I’m always torn when it comes to drone regulations around the world. On the one hand, sure, we want the freedom to go out and fly our drones to shoot photos or videos or just have a bit of fun. On the other, there are a lot of idiots and careless people out there who should not be in control of a drone, especially when it comes to being around other people.
This incident is a perfect example of the latter, as popular Indian singer Benny Dayal was hit by a drone on stage during a live performance. It’s unclear if it’s known who was piloting the drone and in what capacity it was being used, but it was buzzing around him during his performance on stage when its propellers hit him in the head.
[Related reading: Drone pilot fined £3,000 for flying near WW2 Hurricane aircraft]
— Aakash (@AakashAllen) March 2, 2023
The video of the incident above was posted to Twitter last Thursday and shows what happened while he was performing the song, Urvashi Urvashi. The drone can be seen hovering around the stage and disappearing off to the side before coming back around him, making contact as he steps back. Clearly, the drone pilot and the performer were not in communication before the performance to coordinate the flight.
Dayal took to Instagram after the concert to address what happened. He thanked his fans for their concern and those who cared for him at the venue immediately after the incident. For those who missed what happened, he provided a recap and had a few words for fellow artists regarding drones in their contracts. He also had some advice for venues planning to use drones to record performances and for the drone pilots themselves.
Thank you so much for all your concern you know regarding the incident that happened in VIP Chennai. First and foremost thank you to VIP Chennai you looked after me so much, so well, after this whole incident with the drone hitting the back of my head.
For most people who don’t know what happened, the drone hit, the drone fans, they hit the back of my head and they bruised the back of my head a little bit. And two of my fingers got completely bruised. But it’s all fine, I think I will recover from this much more faster thanks to all your love.
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I just wanted to express three things. One thing is that definitely all artists from here on, make sure you have a clause in your technical writer saying that the drone cannot come that close to any artist while they are performing because your movement and their movement cannot be coordinated unless you have a person who is specifically working with you on drones.
Second thing, please all colleges, companies, show event organisers, please get a certified drone operator because it’s very dangerous. The person should be certified to operate a drone.
And third, and most foremost, most drone operators, I just want to tell you one thing. We are all artists, we are just singing on stage, we are not Vijay or Ajay or Salman Khan or Prabhas or like some action film. You don’t have to do all those stunts. Just do a regular show. We just want the show to look nice and you shouldn’t come so close and hurt the artist.
Drone pilots… Please stop doing stupid stuff. Your random little concert video isn’t going to go viral and make you a fortune or turn you into some kind of social-media-famous celebrity. Fly safely, and if you want to do something a bit extra, speak to everybody involved, particularly the artist, beforehand. If you can’t do that, then don’t do it. It’s quite simple, really.