Drone Crashes Into US Open Stands

Player thought she was going to die
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 4, 2015 2:55 AM CDT

(Newser) – A drone buzzed over the court during a US Open match in New York City's Louis Armstrong Stadium last night and crashed into an empty section of seats. A US Tennis Association spokesman says no one was injured and the New York Police Department is "conducting an ongoing investigation." The black device flew diagonally through the arena during the next-to-last game of a second-round match that 26th-seeded Flavia Pennetta of Italy won 6-1, 6-4 over Monica Niculescu of Romania. The drone broke into pieces upon landing, and the match was only briefly interrupted between points while police and fire department personnel went to look at it.

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Pennetta says she heard the drone fly by and wasn't sure what it was. Her initial reaction, she says, was that it might have been a bomb. "A little bit scary, I have to say," Pennetta says. "With everything going on in the world ... I thought, 'OK, it's over.' That's how things happen." The episode happened a little before 8:30pm, during the day's last match at the stadium, which has a seating capacity of about 10,000. Pennetta and Niculescu originally were scheduled to play on the much smaller Court 17, but their match was moved because four earlier matches in the stadium wrapped up early. "If there had been spectators, it would have hit them and done a lot of damage," Pennetta says. (Read more drones stories.)

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