As mentioned in a previous article, drones are being taught in classes targeted to first responders. This information can prove invaluable in case of emergency. A drone can be an extremely powerful tool in rescue operations if used by capable hands. Drones are becoming more and more accessible to the public. Not only does this mean that people can use them as recreations. Government agencies in the local level can also use drones in their operations.
Local groups such as the police and fire departments have taken an interest in using drones. An eye in the sky can be immensely valuable in events where a visual can be the difference between life and death. Aerial support can spot missing persons, criminals on the run, or capture images of the scene. Drone use can also mean that fewer work injuries can occur. This can happen with them being used to survey areas first before the first responders proceed.
Minnesota State Fire/EMS/Rescue School:
The fire department in Mankato, Minnesota recently began attending classes involving drones. Classes offered at the Minnesota State Fire/EMS/Rescue School in South Central College provide drone training to firefighters in the area. Al Ebbinga and Alex Air Apparatus company, a provider of fire and rescue equipment, are the heads these lessons. Ebbinga’s classes involve the inclusion of drones in the department’s drills and procedures. This will make it easier to transition drones into the field when needed.
The classes are not singular, however. The drone lessons branch out to different and more specific scenarios and actions. Sub-classes involve drone use navigation in smoke, as well as utilizing drones in field extraction cases. Firefighters can also use drones to scope out a building on fire. An aerial view would be an invaluable tool to use in such cases. For example, fires taking place in buildings over ten stories high, for instance. Prior to drone usage, helicopters are requested to survey the area. Now that drones have high definition cameras and thermal sensors, expensive helicopters can rest easy.
Needless to say, the fire department drone classes were a hit.
Over 600 registered firefighters hailing from nearly 200 fire departments all over the area attended. This number makes the school the biggest one in the entire state of Minnesota.