A tourist has been accused of flouting strict no-fly zone rules after crashing a drone onto the roof of a prominent monument in central Rome in Italy’s latest drone-related tourist incident.
The Argentinian, 39, was piloting his drone in Piazza Venezia when he lost control of the device and sent it crashing into the roof of Palazzo Venezia, a 15th-century building from which the dictator fascist Benito Mussolini delivered some of his most famous speeches.
The drone was recovered by building security personnel before being seized by police, who reported the tourist for violating a drone exclusion zone above the city, according to reports. information published in the Italian media.
People who wish to film or photograph the Italian capital from above with a drone must obtain authorization and be registered with Enac, the national civil aviation body. Flying a drone in the center of Rome and in the Vatican is completely forbidden because of all the precious monuments.
However, tourists seem to ignore the rules. Last week, two Mexican tourists crashed their drone into the Leaning Tower of Pisa. The brother and sister have faced police action for breaking no-fly rules around the famous landmark in the Tuscan town.
In 2020, a 40-year-old Polish tourist crashed his drone inside the Colosseum despite being warned that piloting the device inside the ancient amphitheater was prohibited. Last July, a 61-year-old man was charged with “endangering transport security” after flying his drone over Rome at an altitude of 2,000 meters. The man, who was a member of a Facebook page for drone fanatics, was reported after his device was seen by a commercial pilot.
Fortunately, no damage to the monuments was reported due to the impact of crashing drones. Penalties imposed were also not reported, but fines for violating drone rules range from €516 to €64,000.
Italy celebrates Liberation Day on Monday, marking the 77th anniversary of the country’s liberation from German occupation and fascist rule.
Mussolini gave some of his most famous speeches from the balcony of the Palazzo Venezia, including declaring war on Britain and France on June 10, 1940. The building now houses a museum.