The US city of San Diego has announced the launch of an ambitious new program centered on drone technology. The city is introducing the first unmanned aircraft system (UAS) Integration Pilot Program (IPP) drone deployment for the San Diego Fire Department.
City officials who were strong advocates of the implementation of drone technology into public services have said its integration will reduce costs and more importantly save lives. San Diego has partnered with Cape, which is a cloud platform that specializes in drone telepresence and data management.
The program represents one of the first IPP deployments nationwide and was kick-started with a live public safety demonstration at San Diego Fire Station. Working alongside the San Diego Fire Department (SDFD), drones equipped with the Cape Aerial Telepresence platform were launched as part of a fire call simulation.
The primary objective of the drone technology is to provide responders with real-time aerial visibility to both teams on the scene and in the command center. The integration of the technology will enable responders to be more informed and will make better decisions more quickly.
The ambitious project was formally announced towards the end of 2017, and the IPP is an initiative from the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), focused on enabling the safe expansion of commercial drone operations in the United States.
"This advanced technology will make emergency responses more efficient, reduce costs and save lives," said John Valencia, executive director of the San Diego's Office of Homeland Security. "Time is valuable in any situation and drones will allow the City to better allocate resources when responding to emergencies."
This project with the city of San Diego is just the latest example of Cape's work in helping companies across all industries utilize drones as a tool for improving safety, increasing operational efficiency and enabling innovation.
"Today's smartest cities are turning to drones to not only power innovation but to improve the safety of residents, visitors and first responders,"said Chris Rittler, CEO of Cape.
"It's an honour to be a part of one of the very first IPP deployments and to showcase the full capabilities of drones and the impact on public safety. The city of San Diego is helping define the smart cities of the future and we are extremely proud to be the technology partner they trust to make it possible."