Israel purposely crashed own surveillance drone near Egypt border (and it’s not the first time)

According to Haaretz, on Jul. 14, a Hermes  450 UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) was purposely downed by the IDF during an unspecified operation near the border with Egypt.

Personnel remotely controlling the drone noticed signs of a technical failure and intentionally downed the UAV in an area where Israel’s security forces could collect the wreckage.

This is not the first time the Israeli forces forced one of their drones to crash due to concerns that the malfunctioning drone could crash into a populated area or go into the wrong hands.

In May, a Heron-class “Shoval” UAV was directed into the sea near Netanya following an engine malfunction whereas in January 2012, an “Eitan,” crashed in southern Israel during a test flight as a consquence of a failure.

As already reported, the IAF operates a huge fleet of UAVs of various kind, used for various purposes, including pinpointing missiles being moved from Lebanon to Syria and performing surveillance next to the border with Egypt made unstable by the anti-Morsi protests.

Noteworthy, according to some readers of The Aviationist, there are so many Israeli drones flying over Lebanon lately, that the Israeli Air Force mistakenly shot down one of them on Apr. 25 near Haifa.

Anyway, whereas future drones, as the U.S. Navy’s new X-47B UAS (Unmanned Aerial System), are capable to autonomously take decisions as important as aborting a landing on an aircraft carrier, current drones still need much human intervention, at least when it comes the need to crash them into the ground.

Top Image: Hermes 450 of the Brasilian Air Force (credit: Wiki)

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About David Cenciotti 3821 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written four books.