After learning that the Hatzalah, a Catskills Division volunteer ambulance service in New York, was launching a drone unit for Search and Rescue purposes, the State Police Troop F UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems) Unit invited them to a joint training exercise. One of the goals of the joint training exercise was that state police pilots could meet and become acquainted with the Hatzalah drone pilots.
The Hatzalah, which has acquired drones and is getting flying instruction from Hudson Valley Drones, learned about proposals for airspace deconfliction, communication needs, and NYSP laws and procedures while dealing with manned aircraft (helicopters) in emergencies.
Both agencies require their pilots to be FAA Part 107 certified (Federal Aviation Administration).
Drone units collaborate
During different emergencies, each Troop's State Police UAS Units often collaborate with drone units from police agencies, fire departments, and other first responder organizations. They promote this sort of cooperative training exercise.
In recent years, we have seen many search and rescue agencies and first responder units start a drone unit and UAS programs. Let us know what you think about First Responders using drones in the comments below. We are curious to hear what you think.
Photos courtesy of Keith Perry and the New York State Police.
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