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Techie1

Force launches drone unit

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Techie1    826
Techie1

Devon and Cornwall Police advertised for a "drone team manager".

BB897000-ABB0-4FC7-B077-F1B6E169DD9E-2118-000002DD8B868F68.jpeg

A police force is to launch a round-the-clock drone unit to help tackle crime.

Devon and Cornwall Police advertised for a "drone team manager" to set up and manage an "operational and dynamic drone response" from nine policing centres across the two counties and Dorset.

The force began trialling drones in November 2015 to test their operational effectiveness, using four DJI Inspire 1 devices with high-definition cameras to assist officers with police matters such as looking for missing people and taking crime scene photographs.

Assistant Chief Constable Steve Barry, National Police Chiefs' Council lead for drones, said forces were "committed to embracing new technologies to deliver high-quality, cost- effective services and protection to the public".

"Drones are one of a number of options that can deliver air support both now and in the future.

"They have the potential to change the way we police by working with other technologies and updating traditional methods of foot and aerial patrols.

"Trials and consultations are ongoing to develop more guidance for how the police service can use drones to help keep people safe."

Mr Barry added: "Deploying drones is a decision for individual chief constables who ensure that they are used appropriately in the interest of public safety and efficient allocation of police resources."

Around 21 police forces are experimenting with the technology.

Chief Superintendent Jim Nye, strategic alliance commander for operations in Devon, Cornwall and Dorset, said the drones would be a "significant piece of kit", which would provide an "opportunity to improve technology available to police to better do what we do".

Earlier this year, Labour MP Nick Smith said police should consider using drones to track down off-road bikers who are "vandalising" the mountains of Wales.

During Home Office questions in the Commons, he said: "Because off-road bikers often go where the police cannot, can the Home Office look into providing resources, agreement and licencing on the use of drones to help us tackle this problem?"

View on Police Oracle 

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Jedi Knight    55
Jedi Knight

Certainly cheaper and more useful than a helicopter in certain circumstances.

I saw a film crew one time using quite a big one, about 2-3 metres square.  Held quite a big camera and certainly useful enough for searching a locality. I'm guessing it could easily have taken a thermal imaging camera or something.  It ran on batteries but I guess you could adapt it to have a small petrol engine or something..

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MerseyLLB    4,964
MerseyLLB

The drones being trialled can do a max of about 50mph, have a max flying time of 20 minutesish when not at full speed and should not be operated in winds of more than about 20mph.

For most applications the drones on offer seem a bit gimmicky.

Their utility would seem to lie in static postings in good weather to monitor a crowd or search an open space. I'm unsure if the current setup has IR capabilities as this would mean extra weight affecting flying time and speed.

We should trial their use for set circumstances but I don't think we can herald them as the solution to most policing challenges.

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andi+    1,214
andi

We've used the fire brigades drone in the past to conduct area searches and to monitor incidents, they can be extremely useful. It has thermal imaging capability and a very good camera with a downlink. I do think they're the future and can supplement traditional air support.

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MerseyLLB    4,964
MerseyLLB
23 hours ago, andi said:

We've used the fire brigades drone in the past to conduct area searches and to monitor incidents, they can be extremely useful. It has thermal imaging capability and a very good camera with a downlink. I do think they're the future and can supplement traditional air support.

I'm interested as to the incidents you've used them for and how you got round the issues.

Do you know which drone the Fire Brigade use?

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andi+    1,214
andi

Google tells me it's an Aeryon SkyRanger (£50k!). Used it to clear rooftops on high and dangerous buildings during misper searches and a report of someone seen on a roof, and to monitor a suicidal male threatening to jump. It could be used to check innaccesible or large open areas. I don't think they'd turn out to try and locate suspects but I've never tried asking. There's only one too, so it's not always available and you sometimes have to wait.

Drones are still a pretty new thing. Not so long ago they were only used by the military, and we're huge and expensive. Now you can go to maplins and buy ones that'll fit in your backpack with a 4k camera capable of 4 mile range and 40mph for £1k.

I think in the future, something like a Dji Mavic with a thermal imaging camera could easily be issued out, maybe one or two on each division, with a few trained officers.

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MerseyLLB    4,964
MerseyLLB
21 hours ago, andi said:

Google tells me it's an Aeryon SkyRanger (£50k!). Used it to clear rooftops on high and dangerous buildings during misper searches and a report of someone seen on a roof, and to monitor a suicidal male threatening to jump. It could be used to check innaccesible or large open areas. I don't think they'd turn out to try and locate suspects but I've never tried asking. There's only one too, so it's not always available and you sometimes have to wait.

Drones are still a pretty new thing. Not so long ago they were only used by the military, and we're huge and expensive. Now you can go to maplins and buy ones that'll fit in your backpack with a 4k camera capable of 4 mile range and 40mph for £1k.

I think in the future, something like a Dji Mavic with a thermal imaging camera could easily be issued out, maybe one or two on each division, with a few trained officers.

They must have upgraded, that makes more sense.

The trial drones were retail ones.

I was wondering how to get round the lack of range from the operator. Would the operator be able to be mobile to stop this becoming an issue?

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rooikop77 *    0
rooikop77

a very inexpensive and versatile alternative to helicopters for search and even rescue situations.


Sent from my SM-G900F using the Police Community App

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andi+    1,214
andi
They must have upgraded, that makes more sense.
The trial drones were retail ones.
I was wondering how to get round the lack of range from the operator. Would the operator be able to be mobile to stop this becoming an issue?


If I remember rightly, it was controlled by a standard sort of looking remote control and a tablet. The whole thing came in a plastic case. Retail ones have a range of several miles though with the correct licence.

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk

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Prae    745
Prae
They must have upgraded, that makes more sense.
The trial drones were retail ones.
I was wondering how to get round the lack of range from the operator. Would the operator be able to be mobile to stop this becoming an issue?

Even retail drones have decent ranges on them nowadays - mine will do 4 miles in an open area and fly for 30 minutes in pretty adverse weather but not rain.

Clearly drones aren't the answer to everything that a helicopter can do but they're certainly a very useful tool that can be deployed in a variety of roles at a much reduced cost.

EGT for football, flying overhead at a planned warrant, searching for MISPERS in a defined area, surveillance and so on.

76ce7339c64858de0697476e7286ee80.jpg

Pretty compact too!

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Zulu 22    204
Zulu 22

Boys toys and very limited. We have a local farmer and various drones are being flown over his land. Now his sheep are lambing so he just shoots them out of the sky with his 12 bore.  There have been several complaints and nothing can be done. He is using the same defence as having the right to shoot dogs which are worrying his sheep.

Drones are so very limited (Cost,Time, speed, range, equipment, etc, etc.) that they are just a fad. If they were so advanced in technology then they would be more expensive than a helicopter.

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Indiana Jones    790
Indiana Jones
1 hour ago, Zulu 22 said:

Drones are so very limited (Cost,Time, speed, range, equipment, etc, etc.) that they are just a fad. If they were so advanced in technology then they would be more expensive than a helicopter.

I think your logic has fallen down there. 

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Zulu 22    204
Zulu 22
32 minutes ago, Indiana Jones said:

I think your logic has fallen down there. 

No, just realistic.  To add to problems around airports where they can pose danger and would be in a no fly zone. Farm Giles just loves the clay pigeon and skeet shooting.

The Police drones are not far removed from the private drone craze.

Edited by Zulu 22

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Richhamdo+    762
Richhamdo

Going to have to disagree with you on this I'm afraid Zulu 22, I am probably as old as you, maybe even older who knows, but  I can see the potential for drones for helping to find  runners and poachers (farm thieves who steal quad bikes etc). Fell/Mountain rescue would find them useful also I expect. They are developing all the time and drones that are fit for the use to which they are being put are the future, especially if they have night time capability. 

I still haven't forgotten the farm thieves we lost late one night in the fields. I'm sure you know how frustrating that sort of thing is. The police need every single edge that they can get. We have been told to "work smarter"  so let's do it. Maybe we could have a "drone section"  in all districts  a bit like dog section if you like. I'm sure there are plenty of enthusiastic bobbies that could pass  the relevant tests/guidelines for drones like the Phantom 4 or something similar just to start with.. Rich.

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