Public safety  

When disaster strikes and public safety is threatened, every second counts.

Lightweight fixed-wing drones such as the eBee X and our Blue sUAS Approved eBee TAC have proven capabilities that enable law enforcement, firefighters and emergency services teams to rapidly deploy from a safe distance, capture the scene and make informed decisions on coordinating resources – to better protect communities and save lives.

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    How are UAVs used in public safety?

    Search and rescue missions – UAVs quickly provide rescue operators access to aerial data over large areas, giving teams the ability to expedite search efforts for mission people. Fixed-wing UAVs for example, have the ability to map sites up to 2.6X faster than a typical quadcopter and can map remote sites within a 5X larger flight radius.

    Firefighting and land management – Aerial data and 3D digital terrain models provide detailed information emergency responders use to monitor active wildfires, flooding and other threats to neighboring communities. Powerful multispectral sensors provide the ability to easily threshold vegetation for monitoring and management of trees and dense vegetation within power line encroachment areas.

    Disaster response – eBee fixed-wing UAVs can be used for rapid field deployment following hurricanes, floods, tornados and wildfires to conduct fast damage assessments delivering real-time situational awareness for first responders on the scene. This data can later be used to maintain a library of high-risk areas for before and after comparisons.

    Border security and patrol – SRT teams can use portable UAVs such as the eBee TAC that are designed for tactical deployment in disconnected environments and thermal payloads which allow agents to monitor and detect targets quickly across a variety of terrain.

    Utility and infrastructure assessments – Current cadastral maps collected by drones provide city planners and engineers visibility of key buildings, utilities and transportation infrastructure that may be impacted following a severe weather event. Due to aerodynamic advantages, fixed-wing UAVs such as the eBee X can map corridors up to 3X longer than a typical quadcopter.

    Accident and crime scene reconstruction – Following an accident, the accuracy of the scene must be preserved. UAVs reduce the time required to photograph large areas while delivering highly-accurate scene reconstructions.

    What are the benefits of UAVs for first responders?

    Heightened situational awareness – With fast access to aerial data of large areas, responders can pinpoint possible places with missing persons who might be trapped while mitigating risk in hazardous areas during the rescue.

    Rapid needs assessments (RNAs) – Emergency responders can use UAVs and aerial data to reevaluate RNAs, allowing them to quickly build base maps before rescue operations enter hazardous zones.

    Quicker response times – UAVs can be rapidly deployed and reach inaccessible locations fast while providing valuable information on transportation and infrastructure to local emergency responders.

    Detailed scene documentation – Photogrammetry drones such as the eBee X with RTK allow law enforcement and investigators to produce maps and 3D models of a scene with highly accurate GPS-referenced imagery.

    Faster resource planning & coordination – Aerial data can be used in real-time to make decisions on evacuations, what roads are closed and what roads are open to coordinate rescue and relief efforts.

    What types of UAV data outputs are available?

    Quick-stich 2D orthomosaic maps – A geospatially accurate and detailed 2D representation of a site by combining a large number of nadir drone images. These maps can be rapidly processed in the field to provide near real-time information to law enforcement and first responders.

    Corridor maps – Ideal for mapping flood extent around coastlines, rivers and creeks. Data can be rapidly processed in the field with PIX4Dreact and shared with local GIS professionals and disaster response teams using Esri’s ArcGIS Online.

    Contour lines – Topographic maps take X and Y coordinates from the aerial drone data to generate precise contour intervals. The public safety and emergency response teams benefit from these contour line outputs for monitoring water flow during flooding, mudslides and wildfire directions.

    Cadastral maps – Public safety and emergency teams can collect updated cadastral maps of entire cities which are useful for disaster preparedness and advanced planning, development of RNAs, etc.

    What software do you need?

    • eMotion software is a leading drone software solution for flight planning, geotagging and photo stitching. From here the imagery can be exported for further processing in Pix4D and other software.
    • PIX4Dreact, PIX4Dmatic and PIX4Dcloud are popular photogrammetry solutions for generating rapid-stitch orthomosaic maps in the field for emergency teams and first responders.
    • Measure Ground Control can be used to manage a drone fleet, as well as to process multispectral imagery from MicaSense sensors. Emergency teams can use Measure to project the area mapped in real-time to ensure complete coverage and documentation.

    How do UAVs support public safety workflows?

    UAV-based aerial imagery helps public safety teams save time, allocate resources and see the big picture as the scene unfolds.

    Law enforcement – UAV mapping accelerates scene documentation and takes a fraction of the time compared to traditional methods. Precise georeferenced photogrammetry outputs such as 3D models allow investigators to revisit a scene and share evidence at any time from anywhere.

    Firefighting – For urban fires and wildfires, interactive before/after maps can be compared with satellite imagery to reassign teams on location, and provide a better understanding of the path of fire and damage to property. Near real-time situational awareness allows emergency teams to better allocate resources where they’re needed – and reassign them when they’re not.

    Search and rescue – Autonomous mapping software to fly grid patterns help ensure complete coverage within a search area to locate missing or injured subjects. Measure Ground Control in real-time projects the area collected and mapped to show the overlap.

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