Drones Are the New First Responders

First responders are constantly putting themselves in harm’s way for the sake of protecting and helping others, but some tools can help make their jobs easier and less precarious. Drones are quickly becoming a legitimate solution for emergency response, even to the point where they are beginning to be the new first responders. Not only is the use of drones safer for human responders — with recent innovations in technology, but they can also be a much more efficient means of responding to crises. This means more lives saved while putting fewer at risk in the process.

Drones make emergency operations much safer for teams because the technology allows them to monitor from a remote, secure location. In particular, when dealing with disaster zones, first responders can find themselves in some perilous situations. But rather than put themselves into a precarious position, responders can operate the drone from a safe distance.

One of the main benefits of using drones for search and rescue is that they can complete the process much faster. Modern drones are equipped with features that enable them to operate much quicker and more efficiently. Hardware is designed to help the drone maneuver better, and sensors and cameras allow the drone to see things that the human eye alone could not.

To maximize flight efficiency, most drones these days are equipped with several propellers, substantially increasing the speed, handling, and stability of the drone. This, combined with vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) technology, means that drones can operate much more smoothly today than ever before.

In terms of technology that allows drones to search more effectively, one of the most important features is thermal imaging. It can be difficult for a human to search through thick rubble or forests, but drones have thermal imaging capabilities that pick up on body heat, even when a person is obscured from sight by some obstacle. This technology allows rescue missions to stay rescue missions and not turn into recovery.

The ability of drones to provide real-time imagery is also instrumental in search and rescue missions. Drones can scan for survivors and look for signs of life from the air much more quickly than a human climbing through the rubble. Watching a drone’s feed can allow a rescue team to be dispatched to the correct location without delay, instead of having them do an extensive on-foot search as the first measure.

Battery life has also been improving significantly in drone technology. When drones first emerged, their short battery life greatly limited their utility. However, now drone units have batteries that can last for several hours, permitting them to undertake longer searches of much broader areas. And with this, responders also don’t have to worry as much about fatigue disrupting rescue operations.

These tools also help rescue teams with mapping disaster zones. Having drone imagery of the entire zone can be a valuable asset to teams as they plan what their strategy will be by helping them to identify opportunities, weak points, and evacuation routes in the area in which they will be operating.

Drone technology can also be beneficial in the criminal sector. The cameras with which many drones are equipped can discourage criminals from participating in illegal activity or can capture them in the act so that they can later be apprehended. And the search capabilities of drones can help find suspects who are hiding from authorities.

The trend of embracing drone technology in the emergency response field will result in better operations for responders and more lives saved. As drone technology continues to improve, this will go from being a viable solution to making the job of first responders safer and more efficient to becoming the default way that rescues are done.

In addition to being the Founder of ZenaTech, which owns the ZenaDrone technology, Shaun Passley is also the Founder of EPAZZ, Inc., and has had the privilege to head eight different companies. With an MBA from Benedictine University, an undergraduate and graduate degree from DePaul University, a graduate degree from Northwestern University, and a doctorate from Benedictine College, Shaun’s creativity and entrepreneurial spirit enable him to identify key market opportunities and successfully launch new ventures. He is responsible for EPAZZ, Inc.’s software and product development which includes the design, research, and development of ZenaDrone and future products and services.

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