A coalition of public-safety officers and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) industry partners recently formed the Drone Advocates for Public Safety (DAPS), a nonprofit group that will focus on training first responders in using drones to support their operations.
DAPS will help officers understand the possibilities for how drones can be used in emergencies. The group hopes to raise public awareness of how safety officers use drones to improve their responsiveness and, based on public feedback, aims to create a formalized standard of practice.
“In a matter of minutes, we can get a full view of an incident from the air – allowing us to deploy resources quicker and make decisions based off what we see from a live feed. This group will bring professionals together to share ideas and experience to form best practices on the use of UAVs for our industry,” he explains.
Matt Sloane, DAPS founder and principal of Skyfire Consulting, adds, “The law enforcement sector faces public concern about privacy, and the fire/rescue sector faces concern about nuisance drones and the safety of personnel on the ground. With this group, we hope to address all of these concerns with national, standardized guidance to agencies hoping to adopt this technology.”
Brendan Schulman, founding board member of DAPS and the recently appointed vice president of policy and legal affairs at DJI, says, “We are constantly inspired by the public-safety workers who put their lives on the line to help rescue others.
“The potential of new technology to help first responders is exciting, and we are thrilled to support DAPS as it reaches out to the broader safety community to reduce the time needed to get crucial aerial information in situations where seconds count,” he says.