This post is also available in: heעברית (Hebrew)

A development by a US-based Israeli company was successfully applied by first responder teams during the recent Hurricane Michael events in Florida. The platform combines 3D mapping, data, and live video from UAVs and other aerial platforms.

The drone and augmented reality startup Edgybees for critical situational awareness during rescue missions has developed a real-time platform that relays vital information over video captured by drones to help lead rescue efforts in natural disasters and public safety incidents.

The company’s technology and services are already being used across the US by first responders, search-and-rescue teams, police and fire departments, and US telecommunications services to comb through damage, including in the aftermaths of hurricanes.

First responders teams download the software for their flying drone or other aircraft before the hurricane is about to hit. The emergency personnel on the scene can transfer the information from the drone to a smartphone, tablet, or to the command center, giving the search-and-rescue team the ability to cooperate with those departments for rescue missions, CEO Adam Scott Kaplan told nocamels.com.

With a technology which first began as a drone racing game, the company collaborated with DJI Chinese drone company, and by 2017 released First Response, a drone-flying app helping to direct and orient responders in emergency situations and disaster zones.

While the responders already had the drones, the new tech provided the real-time mapping solution that would help them identify important information like the location of victims, distress signals and points of interest.

The innovative AR (Augmented Reality) technology software is tested on various types of drones. “The plan is to expand our real-time AR technology to additional verticals including defense, smart cities, automotive, and broadcast media, not to mention CCTV and body cameras,” Kaplan said.

Describing Edgybees tech as “Waze up in the air,” he says the maps provided by the software have been used by emergency response teams during Hurricane Irma last year to locate people who were stranded near washed out bridges, to pinpoint destruction during Hurricane Florence last month, and by firefighters during the Northern California wildfires last October.