Sentera LLC, a software, sensor and drone company, has announced plans to donate a DJI Phantom 3 Professional drone and one-year OnTop imaging platform license to the Tower Family Foundation, a nonprofit that provides financial assistance to family members of severely injured, permanently disabled or deceased tower workers.
To help raise financial support for the foundation and increase awareness of tower climbing safety, the Tower Family Foundation will auction off the drone and software package to the highest bidder via silent auction at the upcoming National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) UNITE 2016 Conference in New Orleans on Feb. 22-25. Last fall, NATE established a committee focused on unmanned aircraft systems.
“Climber safety was Sentera’s motivating factor to enter the tower inspection market space,” explains Greg Emerick, executive vice president of business development for Sentera. “As a proud member of NATE, we want to raise awareness about the Tower Family Foundation, encourage others to support this worthy cause and recognize their efforts to promote safety while helping families of climbers impacted by tragic circumstances.
“While drones will never eliminate the need to climb a tower, they are able to rapidly perform a visual inspection and identify instances where a climber is and is not physically needed on the tower,” Emerick continues. “This simple visual check dramatically reduces the number of required climbs – increasing climber safety.”
Jim Tracy, president of the foundation, adds, “The Tower Family Foundation is appreciative of Sentera’s generous donation and anticipates that this drone and software package will generate immense interest by attendees of NATE UNITE 2016.”