19 Jul 2013

Licenses to shoot down drones mooted in Colorado

6:19 am on 19 July 2013

A town in Colorado, USA, is considering starting paying bounties to anyone who shoots down an unmanned drone.

Next month, trustees of Deer Trail (population 600) 55 miles east of Denver will debate an ordinance that would allow residents to purchase a $US25 hunting license to shoot down "unmanned aerial vehicles."

The town would pay $100 to anyone who can produce the fuselage and tail of a downed drone.

"Either the nose or tail may be damaged, but not both," the proposal notes.

The expansion of drones for commercial and government use is alarming, said resident Phillip Steel.

He said he has not seen any drones, but that "some ranchers" outside the town limits have seen them.

Under the proposal, hunters could legally shoot down a drone flying under 1000 feet with a 12-gauge or smaller shotgun.

The town also would be required to establish a drone recognition programme for shooters to properly identify the targeted aircraft.

Mr Steel, an Army veteran, said the ordinance will go before voters in a special election if the trustees don't vote to adopt it.