TGI Friday’s recently launched a holiday campaign involving mistletoe drones designed to get restaurant patrons to kiss on camera. It sounds like a nice, romantic way to get diners in the holiday spirit, but things didn’t quite go as planned at the launch party in New York when a photographer was struck in the face by one of the drones when it went flying towards her.
Georgine Benvenuto was photographing the launch of the mistletoe drones in Sheepshead Bay, and was about to take shots of a couple kissing underneath one of the four-bladed drones. According to the Daily Mail, Benvenuto was worried prior to the shoot that a drone could potentially harm someone due to the fact that it was flying around indoors.
The drone in question was being flown by David Quiones, who decided to show a Brooklyn Daily reporter what it would be like if the drone flew onto her hand. Quiones gave control of the drone to reporter Vanessa Ogle who began to navigate it following Quiones’ instructions, when she suddenly flinched. The quick movement caused the drone to “fly into” Benvenuto’s face.
“It kind of landed, but it did something to her hand,” Benvenuto said. “I don't know whether it was buzzing or what, but she flinched. And when she flinched, I was standing maybe a foot away from her, and this smaller toy drone for children flies into my face at that point.”
When the drone collided with Benvenuto, fishing wire that connected the mistletoe to the drone became caught in her hair and the blades began “twirling and twirling and twirling” on her nose. She was finally able to get the device away from her, but sustained several injuries including a deep cut below her lip and one that cut off a bit of the tip of her nose.
The photographer said that Quiones didn’t attempt to help her or even let go of the drone controls during the ordeal, but the pilot put the blame on Ogle and her involuntary flinch. Quiones said that despite Benvenuto’s injuries, he is not concerned that the incident would prevent people from coming to the restaurant and taking part in a mistletoe kiss.
“If people get hurt, they're going to come regardless," Quiones said. "People get hurt in airplanes; they still fly. There is a risk involved. Anything flying, there is risk.”
A spokesperson for TGI Friday’s claimed that launch parties in Texas and Long Island, New York, went off without any injury or incident, and has assured customers that risk of danger is low.
Source: The Daily Mail / Photo Credit: nypost.com