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WHY DRONES?


Helicopters are better suited for SAR: They have the personnel  as they are spotted. Drones do not.


There are other reasons to use unmanned drones for damage assessments rather than SAR missions. Airborne humans are not required to conduct aerial damage assessments. Drones equipped with high-resolution cameras and wireless data   wing aircraft. Speed and cost-effectiveness matters during and            mileage from their emergency response budgets.


“ONE OF THE GOOD THINGS ABOUT DRONES IS THAT GENERALLY THEY ARE MORE READILY AVAILABLE IN QUANTITY IN A DISASTER SCENE, THAN SAY HELICOPTERS OR FIXED-WING AIRCRAFT,” KIESERMAN ADDED. HOWEVER, HE CAUTIONS THAT “DRONES STILL HAVE TO COMPLY WITH FAA REGULATIONS, SO YOU STILL HAVE TO HAVE SOMEONE WHO IS QUALIFIED TO BE A DRONE PILOT, AND YOU STILL HAVE TO HAVE AIRSPACE CLEARANCE IN CERTAIN AREAS.”


Finally, using drones for damage assessments frees helicopter pilots and their aircraft to focus on life-saving SAR and other top-priority missions. During and after a disaster, any option that reduces the demand for manned aircraft and the resources they need is good news indeed.


56


Mar/Apr 2018


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