For world-class ski racers, mere hundredths of a second can mean the difference between victory and defeat. On Tuesday night, though, for Marcel Hirscher, split seconds were the difference between having a camera-carrying drone crash down on his head and escaping unscathed.
“I didn’t know what it was, but I felt something,” Hirscher, a two-time overall world champ from Austria, told the Associated Press after his second-place finish in the event in Madonna di Campiglio, Italy. “You don’t want to think about what could have happened when 10 kilograms (22 pounds) are coming down 20 meters (65 feet). That would have been a very serious, bad injury. There are a lot of cool things nowadays. But you have to guarantee the safety—and that was just insane.”
The international ski federation (known as the FIS) announced Wednesday that it would ban camera drones at races moving forward.