On Wednesday, lawmakers in Utah voted to approve a bill that would make it legal for firefighters or law enforcement to shoot down, spoof, or otherwise disable drones found flying over airspace that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) puts under temporary restriction due to wildfire.
The bill was passed after a small drone flying over a fire 300 miles south of Salt Lake City forced firefighters to ground aircraft. Utah’s governor, Gary Herbert, has said that the fire expanded and became more expensive to control after the drone incident. Herbert is expected to sign the bill in the coming days.
Evan Vickers, the Utah senator that co-sponsored the bill, said that firefighters and police would be allowed to shoot a drone down, but he added that they’d probably use technology to jam signals sent to a drone and bring it down that way. (You can see a video of that kind of solution here.) “The redneck in me [says] to shoot the damn thing,” the Republican senator said to the Salt Lake Tribune. “But there are much more humane ways to do that,” he added.