An amateur photographer has landed a small drone aboard HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier, the largest ship in the Royal Navy and remained undetected before taking off again.
The incident happened when the ‘Queen Elizabeth’, which is to be commissioned by the Navy later this year, was docked in the Scottish port of Invergordon in July. The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said that the security around the carrier will be reviewed due to the incident.
A local amateur photographer saw the arrival of the warship, which cost the £3 billion (US$3.9 billion), as a great opportunity to obtain some footage.
The man, who opted to remain anonymous, told the Daily Mail he was “amazed” that he managed to land his £300 worth DJI Phantom quadcopter drone aboard the 70,000-tonne vessel and then take off again without being detected. “There was no-one about to prevent it from landing although there were security police around in small boats who were waving at the drone… There was absolutely no one around when I landed, it was like a ghost ship,” the photographer told the Daily Mail.
In a separate interview with the BBC, he said: “I could have been anybody… I could have carried 2 kilos of Semtex [plastic explosive] and left it on the deck.”
According to the drone pilot, he never planned to land his quadcopter on the aircraft carrier’s deck, but was forced to do so due to difficult weather conditions.