Culture

Toddler’s Eye Sliced in Half After Botched Drone Landing

An 18-month-old boy from Worcestershire, UK, lost an eye after it was sliced in half by a toy drone that was being operated by a family friend.

Simon Evans was attempting to land the drone when it suddenly clipped a tree and spiraled out of control causing the propeller to strike young Oscar Webb’s right eye.

“The next thing I know I’ve just heard my friend shriek and say ‘Oh God no’ and I turned around and just saw blood and his baby on the floor crying.”
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Luckily the other eye wasn’t harmed.

The boy’s mother rushed Oscar to Birmingham hospital where he opened his injured eye for the first time.

“…what I thought I saw was the bottom half of his eye and it’s the worst thing I’ve ever seen.”
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“I just hoped and prayed all the way there that what I saw wasn’t true and wasn’t real.”

Since the incident, Evans has been forgiven by Oscar’s family but the accident has left him “physically sick” at the sight of the drones; sadly, these toy drones only reflect the symptom, not the problem.

Oscar’s story is a harrowing one and fearmongers may be tempted to fob the problem off on drones entirely, but accidents surrounding new tech have happened before; mainly when demand for them outpaces education and common sense—let’s not forget the Wii injury epidemic.

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Oscar will require more operations before a prosthetic eye can be fitted.

If the United States is any indication, the drone market has seen a massive 63% uptick in demand this year, with roughly 7% of consumers looking forward to buying one in time for this holiday season. Mind you, they won’t be all be high-end DJI and Parrot drones, some will be toy drones such as the one that injured Oscar.

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This is the drone that struck Oscar.

Ironically, it’s these toys that are the most dangerous, especially the cheaper models which use basic chips and are solely dependent on the pilot’s skill to safely handle it.

For more on drone safety read Phantom Enthusiast Banned from Flying Drones in First Ruling of its Kind in the UK.

Inset Image in Title Photo via BBC.