Dubai airport briefly halts flights after drone spotted

Earlier today, Dubai’s International airport shut down flights for roughly half an hour, owing to the sighting of a drone flying nearby. Departures were halted from 10:13 a.m. to 10:45 a.m over “suspected drone activity,” though arriving flights were still able to land. 

The airport’s social team took to Twitter to update the situation, while noting, “Authorities warned that flying drones without obtaining permission is subject to legal liability as per UAE laws.”

DXB consistently ranks among the top three busiest airports by passenger volume. In 2018, the airport saw more than 88 million passengers. It’s the latest in a recent string of scares involving personal drones flying too close to a commercial airport. At the height of the holiday season last year, London’s Gatwick airport was closed for a day and a half over similar concerns.

An increase in such activity has led to more action from drone manufacturers and increased calls for legislation around the products.

DXB says it is working with local authorities to address the incident. “Dubai Airports has worked closely with the appropriate authorities to ensure that the safety of airport operations is maintained at all times and to minimize any inconvenience to our customers,” the airport said in a statement to The New York Times.