This is my first post however I’d have hoped my first post wouldn’t have been regarding the loss of my drone. I really would appreciate any help or light anyone may be able to provide. I’m in complete dispare that I’ve lost my drone.
I was flying my drone yesterday afternoon whilst on holiday in Portugal when it seems to have malfunctioned lost connection and disappeared.
My drone had only just taken off (20 or so seconds into flight) with a fully charged battery when around 200ft away and still within visual line of sight from the take off position it began to make a strange noise and then disappeared out of sight. It sounded as though the motors suddenly and rapidly increased in speed and malfunctioned even though i had just began to reduce a little height.
I have been unable to locate the drone after spending a full day searching for for it in within a wide area under the location it was last seen above. I have also used the locate my drone function within the app however this has also proven unsuccessful. The last known location appears to be where the drone lost contact with controller over 200ft in the air and around 200ft away from takeoff position, traveling directly ahead of my location.
The weather was perfect for flying, clear visibility, dry, blue skies, satalites locked on and very little wind.
I had began my flight by competing a pre flight health check of the drone, fusilage, arms, rotors and gimbal. I then took off completed a manouver check as I always do after takeoff and before flying off. A simple hover then left right, back forwards, up and down to ensure the aircraft is responding correctly. The drone was working as expected at this stage.
I then proceeded to fly towards the intended target of interest (an old farm outhouse) to capture with photo / video. I was pushing forwards on both the left and right controls to gain height and move forwards. Just as I approached the hotel perimeter bushes (these are around 7-10ft ) and was about to enter the overgrown wasteland beyond the hotel perimeter I began looking at my phone screen connected to the controller to line up my camera with the subject to start filming. At this point I decided to start to reduce my height as I was around 200ft above ground level and well above the tallest bushes and trees in the area of wasteland. The bushes and small trees would be no more than 15-20 ft tall as a maximum. Throughout the flight I remained fully within VLOS.
As I pulled down on the controller to reduce a little height as I approached the old farm outhouse I heard the motors produce a sound I can only describe as sudden overspeed as if the motors were malfunctioning (this was not a sound I had heard the drone make before in any of my flights).
At the same moment the controller disconnected and I then immediately looked up but the drone had disappeared. I cannot confirm if the drone continued to fly away or of it plumented to the ground. I could hear no thud of hitting ground or rustling if the drone had falllen into a tree. The last image on my remote was in black and white (as disconected). The image was level and suggested no change in direction still around 200 ft above ground maintaing a heading towards the target subject. I attempted to press the return home button on the remote however this did not work. (I have used this before and understand how this operates). I waited for 40 minutes in the event the drone returned home itself. The drone did not return. I then scoured the area under the drone where it had last been seen. This was both within the hotel boundaries and the wasteland beyond the hotel perimeter. This proved difficult due to fences, uneven terrain and inaccessible areas due to shrubbery, trees etc.
The wasteland was long grass (3ft or so with patches of dry soil, shrubbery, scattered with the odd tree 15-20ft in height with no electrical devices to cause interference on the ground and no power cables in the area. (There appears to have been a malfunction of software or hardware disconecting the aircraft from controller and causing the loss and flyaway of the drone.
This was my last day of holiday with my family and I have now returned home today. As such I am unable to continue a further search. Searching at the time was dangerous as I was told wild dogs and snakes lived within the wasteland and I should not enter. Regardless of this I spent my final day of holiday searching frantically for my drone with no luck.
Please may I ask your thoughts on this. I have tried to attach the flight record however as I’m a new user here it won’t allow me to do so.
I feel that this was a malfunction and the drone failed to operate as intended.
I’ve emailed DJI this morning however I’m currently awaiting their response. Would have emailed sooner however due to travel home I only got home around half 4 this morning. Drive home from Birmingham airport to Newcastle area.
Appreciate anyone’s help on this.