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Drone Close Encounters Surge as Lawmakers Seek Tighter Rules

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A significant increase in close encounters between passenger aircraft and drones is prompting demands from U.S. lawmakers for tighter regulation and enforcement to avoid a fatal collision.

Pilots on four airliners spotted an unmanned craft on Sunday as they approached Newark Liberty International Airport, the Federal Aviation Administration said in an e-mailed statement. The FAA in recent weeks received dozens of reports about drones too close to aircraft fighting California wildfires and near-collisions over airports in New York, Minneapolis and Austin, Texas.