FAA: Passenger plane hit balloon, not drone, over Chicago

Reverse the presses! It turns out the drone that an Envoy Air Embraer passenger plane reported it had hit August 22 wasn’t in fact a drone. Instead, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) tells DroneDJ it has confirmed the object was a balloon.

FAA confirms Embraer 175 passenger plane hit balloon, not drone, after taking off from O’Hare

The FAA’s response to a DroneDJ email was short and to the point. Although published audio recordings had quoted the Embraer 175 passenger plane’s pilot stating “I believe we hit a drone about 30 seconds ago” after takeoff from Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, the FAA says the airborne obstacle struck was in fact one of the large helium balloons popular with children these days.

“The FAA determined the object was a Mylar balloon,” a FAA spokesperson responded to DroneDJ’s request for information after several reports had published the same information. Much like the FAA’s statement, those stories…