Two South Korean men operate a drone without permission, causing it to collide with China’s treasured ancient pagoda
Published: Oct 17, 2023 09:23 PM
A screenshot of the video.

A screenshot of the video.

Chinese internet users claimed on Monday that they saw a drone, operated by tourists from South Korea, crashing into the Wenfeng Pagoda in Anyang, central China's Henan Province.

"By chance, my parents happened to see the drone. They also saw staff of the scenic spot talking to the tourists from South Korea," one user posted on internet.

Amid the controversy, staff at the scenic spot inspected the pagoda and found that fortunately the cultural relic had not been damaged.

Two tourists from South Korea operated the drone at the scenic spot without approval, and the device collided with the top part of the pagoda before falling onto a platform, according to a media report. They then called the police, who conducted the document verification and reprimanded and educated both tourists.

"The outer layer has white ash, which is relatively hard, so no traces were left after the collision," staff said, adding that, despite there not being any explicit regulation in the scenic area on whether drones are allowed to be flown or filmed in the area, it would have been wise to obtain permission from the authorities first.

According to China's national aviation authority, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), flying a drone is legal in China, but the drone weighing more than 250 grams must be registered with the CAAC, and it must also be licensed for commercial operations and in other situations.

Wenfeng Pagoda has a history of over a thousand years. In 2001, the pagoda was announced as a key China Cultural Heritage and it enjoys a prominent position in China.