The Australian state of New South Wales invested nearly $350,000 in drones early last year, and their investment paid off in incredible ways. Just this past Thursday, two teens who nearly drowned were rescued by a drone.
The drone, the Little Ripper UAV, was one of the state’s newest drones. The Parliamentary Secretary of Northern New South Wales was extremely proud of the investment, and was glad that the drone was in the right place at the right time. The drone only took 70 seconds to reach the drowning teens, when it administered a flotation device for the boys to cling to. Jai Sheridan, the lifeguard supervisor who deployed the Little Ripper, was able to monitor the situation via camera.
Sheridan told reporters that it would have taken lifeguards several minutes longer to reach the teens. Minutes can mean the difference between life and death, so the drone was able to deliver help much sooner than a lifeguard would have been able to.
The $340,000 investment is just a small part of the $13 million investment in a Shark Management Strategy program that has been under development since 2015. Drones were implemented for aerial surveillance and coastal monitoring to help ensure that members of the public are kept safe.