A Dallas hobbyist was testing his camera-equipped drone last November.... And when he looked at his images after the flight, he saw something suspicious. A creek, running past a meat-packing plant, had turned blood red.
He didn't know where to report the suspicious activity. Eventually he found the National Response Center, "the sole national point of contact for reporting all oil, chemical, radiological, biological and etiological discharges into the environment, anywhere in the United States and its territories." It's run by the Coast Guard.
He made a call, and a local investigator was on-site within 40 minutes of the call. A search warrant was obtained, and the Texas Environmental Crimes Task Force had the plant under surveillance for two months. They were concerned because Cedar Creek emptied into the nearby Trinity River.
The plant was run by Columbia Packing Company. It was shut down after the investigation started. The company was cited in 2008 and 2009 for inhumane slaughter and treatment of animals. Source.
"This flight was undertaken completely within the law, below 400′ and visual line of sight. A simple point and shoot camera and $75 airframe are all that were needed."
Original story by Gary Mortimer at sUAS News.
More info on the drone used. It carries a full-sized camera!