Raleigh park goers abuzz over drones

(Kelly Kennedy | CBS North Carolina)


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s a drone.

Some park goers say they’re tired of all the drones buzzing around Dorthea Dix Park, but most drone pilots say they’d be happy to get out of their way if they had their own space to fly.

“This is a very popular place, as you can see the wide open space out here for flying drones, for flying single wing or fixed wing aircraft,” said Drone enthusiast Ken Shorsher.

Marty Miller flies drones for a living, and he says Dorthea Dix is the hotspot in Raleigh for taking off.

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“At any given day we could have 40 people out here and this has been going on for seven years,” said Miller.

But some people who visit the park think it’s a nuisance.

“I personally, coming here, if I was to have a picnic where I’d like some peace and quiet, I don’t think I’d really like seeing them flying around,” said Shealynn Vogel.

Many also have privacy concerns.

“If they have cameras on them I think it could be a bit of a privacy issue if they’re flying above you,” said Tierney Vogel.

“I mean you come here for peace and for solace and just to get away from the world and I would not want a camera being on me even if it’s for their own personal footage,” said Vogel. “It’s just kind of a privacy invasion.”

Drone pilots say they understand people’s concerns and that drones can be loud. That’s why they’re hoping the city will give them a specific drone zone where they can fly.

“Create an area for us because the park is for everybody,” said Miller. “Yeah, they are noisy but they’re getting better. There are newer models out that are much more quieter but they are noisy they sound like bumble bees.”

City officials say they do not currently have any laws on the books regulating drones. Parks and Recreation officials say they have had a couple of complaints about the drones from park goers.

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