Drones Add Speed and Value to Disaster Recovery

An increasing number of drone applications have relevance to emergency… (…)
Unmanned Aerial Systems (drones) are becoming more popular with hobbyists, but also with companies who provide inspection services and aerial photography. An increasing number of drone applications have relevance to emergency management in all phases of an incident, including the recovery phase of a disaster.
 
CPR’s Rick Christ presented eight such applications to emergency management professionals at the Fall Forum – a two-day conference sponsored by the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, and the Virginia Emergency Management Association.
 
Speaking to a packed house, Rick identified several drone applications to expand outside of capturing isolated images to reveal things like the extent of damage to buildings.
 
He also highlighted the importance of pre-mapping areas of critical infrastructure, capturing this data for before/after comparisons in order to empower infrastructure inspection, surveillance and initial damage assessments.
 
In addition to visual imagery, drones can be mounted with Infrared cameras (IR), air sampling capability, communications relays, and even weather monitoring equipment, to provide critical post-disaster data for evaluation and coordination of efforts.
 
Drones can even micro-map debris piles and calculate the cubic yards required to estimate landfill requirements and compute FEMA reimbursement estimates.
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