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A new online reference map to track rescue events around the world shows how drone technology has moved from an experimental concept to standard public safety equipment.
It demonstrates the impact drones have had in finding lost people, shortening searches, reducing risks to rescuers and saving lives.
The DJI Drone Rescue Map shows how more than 400 people around the world have been helped by drones in more than 200 emergencies, and will be continually updated as new rescues occur. The first drone rescue was recorded in Canada in 2013.
Many of the incidents illustrate how drones can find missing people more quickly than a traditional ground-based search, allowing victims to be brought to safety faster, more easily and with less risk and burden for their rescuers.
The map has been compiled from news stories and social media posts from authoritative sources such as police departments, fire departments and volunteer rescue squads. The company encourages public safety agencies to share additional drone rescues so they can be included.
Today, drone rescues are reported about once a week on average, and public safety agencies routinely share those success stories on social media.
The map includes instances of drones:
- finding people lost in forests, fields and mountains, often in darkness using thermal imaging cameras
- dropping life preservers to people struggling in water
- locating boaters stranded on remote waterways
- helping rescue people who were at risk of harming themselves.
The map does not include incidents when a drone is simply used as part of a larger search process; instead, a drone must have directly located, assisted or rescued a person in peril, according to gpsworld.com.