Am I missing something?

So this guy’s friend was flying in an area with a temporary flight restriction starting at 5pm. When the TFR kicked in, the drone immediately started an auto-land, but he was above water and lost the drone.

It’s not his fault. He just “lost track of time”. Somehow, this is all DJI’s fault and they should be buying him a replacement.

Except, his battery is at 71% and he’s more than 1.8km out. He must have taken off 5 minutes before the TFR started and flown directly to it.

And of course the drone is going to land immediately - his idea that it should start a RTH and potentially fly across the entire TFR zone whilst its active is ridiculous.

Also, I know this is in the US, but the FAA still has a VLOS requirement, right? 1.8km? I wish I had his eyesight!


He says DJI has reached out to him now…

For what it’s worth, my opinion is that DJI shouldn’t force land the drone as an opening gambit, especially, as in this case the drone was already going to be within the TFR. Warnings, forced RTH, etc are all better options I suspect.

As to the distance, interesting point raised by the presenter in this: DJI Did Not Crash Your Drone! Lets Talk About This - YouTube as a response to the above. He said (and I paraphrase) that he didn’t necessarily agree it was out of VLOS. Jump to 2:40 for his wording…I’m not sure the FAA would agree with him on his definition of VLOS.


Taking VLOS out of the equation for a moment, surely it wouldn’t be hard for dji to program a 15 or 30 min warning before a TFR kicks in? And even then, possibly limit altitudes to 10-20ft or something? Agreed, height relative to home altitude could cause issues if you’re flying up a hill but I think dji could think more carefully about this. It’s always horrible when you see the inevitable footage happen like this :flushed:


Yeah a 15m warning with my Mavic Air would be pretty much - don’t bother taking off :smiley:


How so? What’s a good flight time on the Air? My M2P can usually do a comfortable 20 mins. Thought the stats on the Air Vs Pro were similar?

In that situation, if I took off and then immediately got a warning that in 15 mins, my bird is coming down, clearly I’d RTH and regret having not planned my trip better.

Whereas, had I planned my trip well, been out for an hr and was now draining my 3rd battery with vengeance, THEN got a warning, I’d clearly still bring her home and would be grateful for any footage is captured up until that point.


Agreed. If I got that warning I’d bring the bird home but my musing is not about the length of warning time - although that is a valid aspect - but much more about how could DJI possibly implement a better system than the ‘forced landing’ that appears to be the situation.

So long as they’re going to have geofencing, I’m not sure what else they could do other than land it once the TFR is in effect.

What if the drone is on the far-edge of the TFR and a RTH meant flying across it? What happens if the drone is making its way home and causes an incident? The pilot says there was a safe landing area just yards away when RTH started, but they were locked out by DJI. So who is responsible?

Maybe a 15-minute warning for pilots to take action themselves, and after that a forced RTH before the TFR starts? They’re keeping a track of how long a RTH will take for the battery algorithms, so maybe double whatever that is (for margins of error) and force a RTH that long before? Then if it’s still in the TFR when it starts, drop it down to an immediate landing?

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How does the RC/AC get TFR info? By having your display device connected to the internet??