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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Medical Drone Delivering Drugs Did NOT Crash In Togo

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 06 Jan 2019 22:22:33 Z)

Did a medical drone delivering drugs crash in Togo during tests? No, that's not true: the story was made up by a fake news site masquerading as satire, it is not real.

The story originated from an article published by [email protected] on January 6, 2019 titled "Medical drone delivering drugs from Korle Bu to Ridge Hospital crashes in Togo; Authorities were testing the drone - BREAKING NEWS - Ghana Latest News" (archived here) which opened:

Medical authorities and a technical team testing Medical Drones have had its first drone crashed in Togo.

The exercise took place at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital on Saturday.

The drone was scheduled to deliver medical supplies from Korle Bu to the Ridge Hospital.

Screenshot of http://news7pm.com/medical-drone-togo/

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail and they wouldn't have seen the "satire" disclaimer at the bottom of the article:

Medical drone delivering drugs from Korle Bu to Ridge Hospital crashes in Togo; Authorities were testing the drone - BREAKING NEWS - Ghana Latest News

Medical authorities and a technical team testing Medical Drones have had its first drone crashed in Togo. The exercise took place at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital on Saturday. The drone was scheduled to deliver medical supplies from Korle Bu to the Ridge Hospital. Authorities say they lost track of ...

The site comes with a satire warning in the footer:

sat·ire ~ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
noun
the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
If you disagree with the definition of satire or have decided it is synonymous with "comedy," you should really just move along.

The picture of the drone used to illustrate the story wasn't even from Africa: it was taken thousands of miles away on Vanuatu in the South Pacific, as can be seen in this article:

Baby is the first child to be given a vaccine delivered by a drone

Joy Nowai lives on Vanuatu - a cluster of islands in the South Pacific The drone took 25 minutes to travel 25 miles (40km) over rugged mountains Once landed, a nurse vaccinated 13 children and five pregnant women A one-month-old baby has become the first child in the world to ever be given a vaccine that was delivered by a commercial drone.

We wrote about news7pm.com before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

About Lead Stories

Lead Stories uses the Trendolizer™ engine to detect the most trending stories from known fake news, satire and prank websites and tries to debunk them as fast as possible. Read more about how we work and how we select stories to check here.

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