UAS Taking Off With Sheriff Departments Around the Country
Law enforcement officials are using UAS for a variety of purposes, from search and rescue to crime scene documentation.
With the FAA putting new rules and requirements for sUAS (Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems) operators into place on August 29, 2016, use of UAS is set for massive growth in a number of organizations and industries. And one of the most important areas rapidly adopting use of UAS is law enforcement. Around the country, Sheriff Departments are starting to use or are set to start using UAS to aid them in fighting crime, gathering evidence and helping out investigative efforts.
Upper Limit Aviation offers a course to help pilots and non-pilots earn their UAS certificate. Through Upper Limit Aviation you can also earn your private pilot certificate and commercial pilot license which makes it significantly easier and faster to then earn your UAS certificate. Call now to inquire about flight training for UAS, fixed-wing aircraft, or rotorcraft: 801-596-7722.
In a recent article in the San Diego Union-Tribune discussing drone use by Sheriff Departments in San Diego and Imperial counties, drones came into play during a recent homicide investigation when “two deputies flew the drone over the outdoor homicide scene, taking aerial photos and videos that would become evidence.”
The article goes on to say that the UAS is one of four in use by the Sheriff’s Department. In addition to documenting crime scenes, the department uses the UAS to aid in missing person searches, to aid SWAT teams, and for certain situations in dangerous or unfavorable scenarios. Sheriff’s Lt. Jason Vickery described the UAS as “an extremely valuable tool, and potentially life-saving,” adding that the department had deployed them nine times since acquiring them last October. Upper Limit Aviation is proud to support such a cause.
In Ouachita County, AK, the Sheriff’s Department purchased a drone a UAS after seeing one in action. According to Sheriff David Norwood, the first real test for the UAS happened recently when the department used it in the execution of a search warrant for a known drug dealer. Norwood, who was controlling the UAS, was able to identify a pair of suspects with the video from the UAS before the drone was shot by the suspects. Norwood said that “Without the drone, we may not have known there was a man there with a gun.”
And in Stafford County, VA, the Sheriff’s Department hopes to start using UAS this coming spring for a variety of purposes, “including search and rescue; Amber, Senior and Blue Alerts; training programs; damage assessment; traffic assessment; crime scene documentation; and execution of search warrants.”
Vickery said that four deputies are currently trained and certified with a remote pilot certificate from the FAA to fly the UAS and that five more are undergoing training. According to Vickery, “This is going to be something that is going to be mainstream in a relatively short amount of time among law enforcement.”
Earning a Remote Pilot Certificate With Upper Limit
Law enforcement is just one of many rapidly growing areas for UAS use, and Upper Limit is excited to offer a course helping people advance in their career or start exciting new careers by earning a remote pilot certificate. Email us with any questions about getting your remote pilot certificate and how it can work for you now: [email protected].
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