This Is Why the Park Service Banned Drones—One Just Crashed Into a Famous Hot Spring | Smart News | Smithsonian
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Yellowstone's Grand Prismatic Spring (Tom Murphy/National Geographic Society/Corbis)

This Is Why the Park Service Banned Drones—One Just Crashed Into a Famous Hot Spring

This is why we can't have nice things

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Apparently, some people are still ignoring the National Park Service’s edict banning drones from all National Parks. These rule breakers are also apparently really bad pilots. This past weekend, a drone enthusiast crashed a camera-equipped drone into one of Yellowstone’s most famous hot springs.  

From Reuters

"What we have to determine is whether the presence of this radio-controlled recreational aircraft poses a threat to that unique resource," Nash said of the Grand Prismatic, the third-largest hot spring in the world and a top attraction for the roughly 3 million visitors who flock to Yellowstone each year. 

The park is puzzling over how to find the drone and extract it without damaging the hot spring, which is 370 feet in diameter, more than 121 feet deep and known for its brilliant colors caused by bacteria and minerals in the water.

In what must be the most headdesk aspect of this entire incident, CNN reports that the tourist flying the drone initially approached a park employee about retrieving their drone from the depths of the hot spring. The park employee was reportedly unaware of the ban and let the tourist go. Authorities remain unsure as to whether they will even be able to track down the drone’s owner. 

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