The use of drones in military warfare is a controversial topic since their introduction. On one side of the coin, there are those who claim that drones are inaccurate and are taking away work from highly trained pilots. While the other side shows that drones keep pilots out of harm’s way and are a cheaper alternative. Whatever your thoughts are on drones be them good or bad, every once in a while they have been known to score some lucky shots.
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Recently a single drone caused a billion dollars worth of damage by blowing up a Ukranian ammunition depot. The drone completed the sabotage of the facility by flying in with a single thermite grenade. The grenade managed to set off a chain reaction of explosions that could be seen over the horizon.
One of the nearby residents managed to catch the massive explosions on film. So if you want to see what a single lucky shot can do you are in for a treat. This must be what Luke Skywalker felt like when he blew up the Death Star.
One of the Ukrainian Army’s largest ammunition depots caught fire overnight after what was probably an act of sabotage using a drone, an official said on Wednesday, setting off gigantic explosions and forcing the evacuation of about 30,000 people.
Like a lethal fireworks display, rocket artillery and tank shells flew out of the depot in all directions, tracing glowing arcs through the night sky and illustrating — if a drone is indeed to blame — the growing role of the devices in combat.
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The blasts, in the town of Vinnytsya, about 160 miles southwest of Kiev, posed a serious danger to air traffic, passing trains and nearby communities.
The depot holds about 200,000 tons of ammunition, the Ukrainian authorities said, and although it was unclear how much was at risk, the firepower was on clear display. As warehouses blew up, gigantic, apocalyptic fireballs rose high above the site.
The airspace around the site was closed, and train traffic was diverted. Two people had been injured. It was not clear how long the depot might burn.
Ukraine’s domestic intelligence agency classified the incident as sabotage. A presidential adviser, Yuriy Biriukov, wrote on Facebook that a drone could have been used to touch off the explosions, adding that, “We are at war.”
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Mr. Biriukov wrote that the fires had so far broken out only at army depots where ammunition was kept in open areas; areas where ammunition was stored in bunkers or hangars, and thus inaccessible to drones, had not been affected.
In March, the authorities evacuated about 20,000 people beyond the range of burning artillery shells after a depot near Kharkiv, in eastern Ukraine, caught fire. The fire burned for several days and eventually ignited about half of the stored ammunition at the site.
When people returned to the evacuation zone, they found pieces of a missile near a gas station and schools with broken windows. The Ukrainian authorities attributed the fire to a drone having dropped an incendiary device.
A second, smaller depot went up in flames this month in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, not far from the front line of the conflict with Russian separatists. That fire was classified as arson, but it was unclear whether it was set off using a drone.