DRONE CRASH BUSSELTON JETTY, WA

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So it was our last stop of our trip down the WA coast and what i perfect last stop....Busselton Jetty.
I set the drone up on about 50% battery and sent it straight down the jetty that is nearly 2KM long, it got down there so quickly, i didnt even take notice of the speed it got there in or the wind conditions as it was such a beautiful site to see, but just as i got to the end and swooped round to head back i noticed that it wasn't coming back at normal speed at all...it was dead slow...this is when the panic kicked in and we realised that it was fighting the winds out there.

With no time to think about options i knew this drone was not going to make it back. I ditched the controller into my brothers lap (who had only flown once and never landed) and headed off the beach for the jetty. As i got to the front i saw some sort of gated system...it sunk in...you have to buy a ticket to get onto the jetty...
I ran into the ticket office shop and saw a queue of people and looked up at the prices board and saw it was around $30 for a ticket and i only had about $10 on me... i was panicking and looking for a back door to get onto the jetty which was stupid but i was in such a dismay i didnt know what to do. The clock was ticking and I saw two guys on the gate taking tickets and i literally said to them "my drones about to crash on the jetty, i dont have i ticket, please can i get it!?"
They very kindly let me through without question.

I started sprinting down into the horizon on what felt like a wooden tread mill, it felt like i was getting no where! I stopped around 400m and took a breath and looked up into the sky to see if i could spot the Phantom...I couldn't see her, i looked behind me thinking it had gone over me but nothing, suddenly i saw her in the far distance but she wasn't getting closer, i then realised that she must be descending on low battery. There was also the jetty train that was also on its way down the jetty towards the drone. I picked up my pace again with my shoes hitting the wooden beams i got closer and closer, and as i did the drone was getting closer and closer to the jetty. I was confused to what my brother was doing but then i thought this is a now or never situation.

(mean while back on the beach Karl was knelt down under a tree in the shade eagle eyeing the iPad trying to gain control and put the bird down, next to him was an elderly gentleman obliviously asking genral questions about the drone not realising the seriousness of what was going on.."so do these things go far then...")
Just as i got to it, it hit the ground and starting bouncing and jumping quickly in the opposite direction to me getting closer to the gap in the wooden beams of the jetty, this is when i thought it was about to hop off into the Indian Ocean.

She flipped over onto her back and the props (the ones that were still intact) were still drilling furiously into the wood, i reached in for the leg and just got a hold of it and as i did it instantly tried to fight me and was trying to take off into the sky again, i wrestled for felt like an eternity trying to press the button on the battery off...


I tipped the pot on the jetty $10 as a thank you for letting me through.
Screen Shot 2016-02-19 at 15.56.42.png
 
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Wow, you made so many bad decisions! I am surprised that the Phantom survived.
Yep. But sometimes an opportunity comes up and you have to take it, so thats why i risked the battery, took no notice of the wind speed either. I guess excitement kicks in But the decision to get up there and rescue it was the best one i made. And at least if it died, id be there to see her in her last moments :)
 
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I'm glad to hear to major damage was done. I'm sure you learned a lot from this experience and there's no point in pointing out the obvious miscalculations . Happy safe flying !!
 
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Good thinking by your brother to keep it over the jetty, especially given his inexperience. I think you owe him a bottle of Patron! Glad you were able to recover with minimal damage.
 
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Good thinking by your brother to keep it over the jetty, especially given his inexperience. I think you own him a bottle of Patron! Glad you were able to recover with minimal damage.
Haha yeah i do! i mean hes built and repaired Lynx helicopters for years but never flown anything, was a bit shaken once i got back off the jetty! Very lucky day. Lots of lessons learnt!
 
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I'm glad for you that this story had a happy ending


Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots mobile app
 
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Great story. Kept me on the edge of my seat.

Glad your bird survived and you learned the importance of checking wind conditions.
 
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Great story buddy, Last time i handed my brother the controller, he did a CSC and it flipped the drone when landing. .
Glad the story came to a good ending, that and you got some killer footage!
 
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Great story, Wolfbrother, and welcome to the forum!

I'm glad you got your bird back dry and relitively undamaged.;)
An experienced pilot once told me that when he flys in wind he stays low. Coming down a bit might have given you more speed on the return trip.
I avoid wind over 20 MPH.
 
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