During the Ravens’ 34-20 win over the Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium in crime-ridden Baltimore City, the game was delayed twice on Thursday night due to an authorized drone flight over the stadium.
With 5:04 left in the second quarter, an unauthorized drone hovered over the field. The drone forced the first of two administrative stoppages.
The NFL has stopped play in the Bengals-Ravens game because someone is flying a drone inside the stadiumpic.twitter.com/6VBqoqv2bM
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) November 17, 2023
The drone made another appearance in the third quarter, forcing officials to take another brief administrative stoppage.
— TV News Now (@TVNewsNow) November 17, 2023
The drone from the ravens bengals game. If you’re gonna violate $10k worth of aviation rules maybe take off the lights? pic.twitter.com/KmfnfqmuUr
— Mad Dog (@boi1duhh) November 17, 2023
“We saw them [the drones] up there. That’s a first,” Ravens head coach John Harbaugh told the team’s sports blog.
Harbaugh said, “I thought I’d seen it all with the Super Bowl with the lights going out at the Super Bowl. Now we have drones flying around.”
The incident comes one month after Cathy Lanier, the NFL’s chief of security, sounded the alarm about ‘thousands of incidents of rogue drones flying over stadiums’ last year.
Meanwhile, Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., who chairs the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, recently warned about “somebody who would use (drones) in a nefarious way and drop a grenade that would do considerable damage and possibly kill individuals.”
Stadiums, such as NFL ones, are placed under highly restricted airspace during games. If a drone operator who does not have clearance flies the craft over or around the stadium, the penalty with the FAA is severe.