Vallejo police department expands successful drone program
An important part of the expansion of the Vallejo police department’s drone program will focus on public outreach and transparency. In a public announcement, the department said that the Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Tech Team will help to improve public safety efforts and will provide police officers with drones as an efficient way of reducing and solving crimes.
The Vallejo police department currently has access to five Part 107 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified drone pilots.
“As our program evolves, our priority remains streamlining the program and policies to increase transparency and provide our community with a better understanding of Drone Technology and public safety benefits,” a news release stated. “The expansion of the VPD’s program will include outreach to community stakeholders, advisory boards and privacy groups like the ALCU to ensure privacy and civil liberty concerns are addressed.”
The Vallejo police department is planning to use the unmanned aircraft that are part of the expanded police drone program for a variety of missions, including barricade situations, active shooter incidents, apprehension of armed and dangerous feeling suspects, high-risk search warrants, investigative scenes (fatal vehicle accidents, homicides, other aggravated incidents), missing person incidents, Search and Rescue operations, disaster scene incidents, hazmat incidents (suspected explosive devices, pursuant to a warrant), special events, outside public agency assists, training missions and mutual aid support.
Early in July, the police department used drones to aid in the capture of an armed suspect involved in a domestic violence incident. The drone helped to locate the suspect and guided the police officers to the location. The suspect was arrested and the gun was recovered. The Vallejo police department said that the drone provided a bird’s eye view, enabled the officers to operate with a higher level of precision and safety take the suspect into custody, reports Govtech.com
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