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A Great Big City

NY State Troopers Begin Using Small Drones in Police Work

DJI Inspire 1 Drone
DJI Inspire 1 Drone via DFSB DE on Flickr

The Governor's office announced that NY State Police will be using new UAV drones to support police on the ground.

Upstate crime scenes will have a new eye in the sky as a pilot program tests how well new drones fit in with everyday police work. Aimed at replacing some of the duties of a police helicopter, the drones will be deployed in both law enforcement and public safety uses, performing tasks where an aerial point of view can improve police work. The drone can observe a dangerous situation without risking human life, whether it be a stand-off or a search-and-rescue mission.

The NY State press release shows a DJI Inspire 2, but no details are provided concerning which models will be used. Troopers assigned to the program will receive 32 hours flight training and be FAA certified. The first four drones will go into service this month, with 14 more by April.

Sixteen of the drones are being donated by the New York State Trooper Foundation.

None of these drones are currently destined for use within NYC, but the NYPD has historically been secretive about its drone usage. The FDNY has been using a tethered drone with an infrared camera to assist their firefighting.


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