Austrian World Cup skier Marcel Hirscher came inches from death this week, as a TV drone fell from the sky during a slalom race. The four-time world champion was just 10 seconds into the race at Madonna di Campiglio in Italy as the UAV crashed into the snow right behind him and smashed to pieces.
Hirscher appeared not to notice the impact, and went on to finish the race in second place. “This is horrible,” he later told ESPN. “This can never happen again. This can be a serious injury. The skier also took to Instagam to post a picture of the falling drone online, along with the caption, "Heavy air traffic in Italy #crazy #drone #crash #luckyme," poking some fun at the situation.
There's no word yet on why the drone fell. In 2014, an athlete in an Australian triathlon was injured when a hacked drone smashed into her face. In this incident, Hirscher avoided a collision, but it’s a reminder that it’s a bad idea to fly drones over sporting events.