Gun-Firing Drone Spurs FAA Investigation

Federal authorities are looking to determine whether any aviation laws were violated after a teen reportedly posted a video of a drone firing a semiautomatic weapon in the woods.


Drones can do many useful things, such as delivering medical supplies to remote areas.

Firing a semiautomatic gun is not one of them.

A recent video (watch below) showing a drone firing a handgun four times has opened an investigation from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), ABC News reports. The video was reportedly recorded by 18-year-old Austin Haughwout of Clinton, Connecticut, who told ABC News (watch the report below) he is pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering.

Haughwout tells ABC News that the drone represents “one of my many engineering related activities.”

According to ABC News, the federal authorities are looking to determine whether any aviation laws were violated and if there were any violations of criminal statuses.

The Associated Press reports that Clinton police say it doesn’t appear as though Haughwout violated any state laws.

Peter Sachs, an attorney and drone advocate, told ABC News, “there are countless ways that drones can be useful. Using one as a remote-controlled weapon is not one of them, and I question the judgment of anyone who would attempt to do so.”

This gun-firing drone is more bad publicity for the drone industry. Drones are interfering with firefighters battling raging wildfires in California. Aircraft is used during wildfires to knock down flames and survey the burn area. When drones are in that restricted airspace, they’re in the path of aircraft.

Watch the videos below and then answer our poll to let us know your thoughts about the gun-firing drone.

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ABC News Video

Flying Gun Video




About the Author

Steve Crowe · Steve Crowe is managing editor of Robotics Trends. Steve has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter.
Contact Steve Crowe: scrowe@ehpub.com  ·  View More by Steve Crowe.




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