DJI has announced that it will release a firmware update for its Phantom 2-series drones in order to prevent the quadcopters from flying over Washington, DC, after a drunken man has crashed a drone on the White House lawn earlier this week.
On Monday morning, January 26, a DJI Phantom drone crashed on the White House lawn, alarming Secret Service employees of a possible attack or spying on the President of the United States, Barack Obama.
The ordeal occurred at about 3AM in the morning and it seems like an unnamed man, who was drunk at the time, is responsible for crashing the drone.
The man is said to work for an intelligence agency of the US Government. Sources say that he will not face any serious consequences for this mistake. However, DJI, the maker of the crashed drone, has confirmed that it will launch a firmware update for the Phantom 2-series quadcopters in order to make sure that such things will never happen again with its products.
DJI drones getting firmware update to prevent them from flying over Washington, DC
DJI will release firmware version v3.10 for the Phantom 2, Phantom 2 Vision, and Phantom 2 Vision+ sometime in the next few days.
It will be a mandatory update, which will make sure that the drones will not fly over the White House. The whole radius measures 15.5 miles / 25 kilometers, and it has been planned for quite some time.
The FAA has recently ruled that the downtown area of Washington, DC is a no-fly zone, so all drone makers must comply to the guidelines.
The same rules are preventing quadcopters from flying near airports and many other “sensitive” zones. The DJI drones are also prevented from flying in such areas in China’s capital city, Beijing. Washington, DC is next, while other will probably follow suit as countries around the world are working on regulations regarding unmanned aerial vehicles.
When in a no-fly zone, DJI drones will simply not take off
The location of a drone can be calculated with ease using its built-in GPS. Whenever the quadcopter finds itself in a no-fly zone, it will not take off. If it is already in air, but enters a forbidden area, then it will immediately exit this airspace.
DJI has revealed that the firmware update 3.10 will become available for download within a few days.
It is unknown whether other changes will be available in this version. Stay tuned, we will let you know as soon as the update gets released.