Heathrow and Gatwick to invest in anti-drone technology

Heathrow and Gatwick airports will invest millions of pounds in anti-drone technology to prevent a repeat of the disruption caused at Gatwick last month.

A spokesperson for Gatwick said the airport had spent £5 million on new defences after flights were grounded and the airport was repeatedly forced to close following a series of drone sightings between 19 and 21 December.

The disruption caused mass cancellations and delays at the Sussex hub, affecting about 1,000 flights and 140,000 passengers.

According to the BBC, Gatwick’s new equipment can detect and jam communications between drones and their operators, similar to the technology deployed by the RAF in response to the attack.

Heathrow has now also confirmed it will buy anti-drone technology, with a spokesman saying: “The safety of our passengers and colleagues remains our top priority.

“Working closely with relevant authorities including the Met Police, we are constantly looking at the best technologies that help remove the threat of drones.”

A couple was arrested in connection with last month’s drone attack but was later released without charge. Sussex Police is still investigating the case.