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Because drones are an increasingly integral part of emergency response operations, the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) says it is working to make sure North Carolina’s drone operators are prepared when disaster strikes.

In partnership with N.C. Emergency Management, the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Program Office of NCDOT’s Division of Aviation Office is working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to create a statewide UAS Working Group with local, state and federal governments, as well as the private sector.

The goal of the UAS Working Group is to establish a partnership through which government and private-sector partners can forge strong relationships by sharing best practices and training for disasters and other emergencies.

The group kicked off its effort last month at a meeting in the Town of Manteo, N.C. Members include representatives from NCDOT, N.C. Emergency Management, FEMA, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Office of the State Fire Marshal, the N.C. Community College System, and the N.C. Public Safety Drone Academy, as well as local law enforcement and fire departments. The next phase will involve meetings with private-sector operators.

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