New drone car to provide quicker, more reliable aerial service – sUAS News – The Business of Drones

Members of Nottinghamshire Police’s drones team will be able to provide a quicker, more reliable service in the future – thanks to a cutting edge, specially adapted new vehicle.

The state-of-the-art SUV will allow pilots to travel to deployments with fully assembled aircraft stowed in custom-built shelves, saving vital minutes on the ground.

A specially designed electrical and battery system, meanwhile, will allow for the continual deployment of fully charged units.

In addition, pilots using the vehicle will also benefit from an integrated StarLink connection, giving them access to a high-speed, dependable Wi-Fi signal to stream live pictures anywhere in the county.

Sergeant Vince Saunders, chief drone plot, said:

“We’ve wanted a specialist vehicle of this nature some time and I am delighted to now have it at our disposal.

“Fundamentally it will enable us to get drones in the air more quickly, fly them for longer, and provide a live stream of our activities anywhere in the county.

“These are all big steps forward for us and could be life saving in a challenging search for a missing person where our drones already excel.”

Previously it could take anywhere up to six minutes for pilots to assemble drones and get them airborne.

Pilots could also struggle to launch in adverse weather because of the need to assemble units outside – exposing sensitive parts to water.

Now aircraft can be stowed and launched fully assembled, such weather poses less of a challenge.

The Nottinghamshire Police drones unit, a shared resource with Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, was set up in 2020 and has 15 volunteer pilots who fit their flying shifts around their other policing duties.  

With six high-tech drones of various sizes and capabilities at their disposal, pilots are on hand to respond to emergencies and carry out pre-planned flights.

Typical missions involve supporting with arrests, crowd control, intelligence gathering, crime scene investigation, searching for missing people and the monitoring of fires.

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