Well, this is it – the video that we've been waiting two years to make:
One of the primary goals of our project is to demonstrate how FPV technology can be a benefit to the public safety community, and while we've had the opportunity to fly with firefighters on several previous occasions, we've always had an “arms-length” relationship with them on the fireground owing to a variety of constraints.
Well, all of that changed with this video... We were able to integrate the SUAS – ably played in this instance by RQCX-3 “Raven” – directly into the ongoing exercise, providing real-time information to the Incident Commander.
This is all thanks to our new friends over at Rising Tide Innovations. This start-up enterprise is based on a premise so clever that I wish I had thought of it: their mission is to help local public safety organizations – primarily fire departments – complete the Certificate of Authorization (COA) process with the Federal Aviation Administration that will allow them to operate drone aircraft.
However, not actually having access to one of those systems, they reached out to us in order to provide a demonstration for a local fire department: Eugene Fire & EMS. Chief Randy Groves graciously allowed us to share our adventure for the benefit of other public safety agencies, to see the true potential of this technology.
And the very best part is, we actually filmed three separate exercises as part of this demonstration. The other two were a hasty river search and a structure fire – and we've got video on those as well, so stay tuned!