India: Police investigate pizza deliveries by drone

Photo of a pizza being delivered by drone

Police in the Indian city of Mumbai are reportedly looking into why a restaurant started using a drone to deliver pizzas without letting them know.

Francesco's Pizzeria says it successfully used a remote-controlled four-rotored drone to send an order to a skyscraper about 1.5km (1 mile) away, the Economic Times reports. In a city that's famous for its snarling traffic jams, the restaurant says drone deliveries could be a green solution that saves on time too. A video the pizzeria put together seems to show footage from one of the test flights.

But the city police now say they're checking whether the restaurant asked permission from the civil aviation authorities. "As per norms, permission must be taken for flying any such object," an air traffic control official says. A local police chief told the told the PTI news agency: "We are very sensitive towards anything that flies in the sky with the help of remote control."

Indian security forces are nervous about the possibility of terror attacks using paragliders or drones, according to sources quoted by IBN Live. But Francesco's insists the experiment was safe. A source told the Economic Times the drone never went higher than 130m (400ft) to avoid interfering with other traffic, and the craft was never out of the reach of the controller. Last year, Amazon said it was testing unmanned drones for deliveries, but said it could take up to five years for the service to actually start.

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