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Public Safety Looks At The Use Of Drones

Seeking Public Input

Post Date:01/22/2018 5:05 PM

drone fire policePolice and fire agencies across the United States are taking a closer look at the value of drones (unmanned aerial vehicles) as part of their integrated emergency response. These drones are able to accomplish tasks more efficiently and in many cases more safely than emergency personnel on the ground. They can also provide incredible situational awareness to emergency service teams.

Drones are currently being utilized by police and fire around the United States in a variety of applications. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Search and rescue. Quickly locate a missing person.
  • Provide aerial perspective
    • Crime scene investigation
    • Hostage situations
    • Terrain that is inaccessible
    • Criminal pursuit
    • Wildland fire tracking
    • Hot spots with thermal imaging
    • 3D imaging of serious vehicle accidents and crime scenes
    • Natural Disaster response
    • Hazmat situations
    • Fugitive apprehension
  • Damage assessment

Interest in the deployment of drones by emergency services is growing. Longmont Public Safety (police, fire, Office of Emergency Management and Longmont Emergency Communication 9-1-1) are seeking to have a conversation about these possibilities.  

We invite your input. Police and Fire will be having a community meeting at the Safety and Justice Center, 225 Kimbark St, Longmont, on February 8 at 6:00 PM in the Community Room. You are encouraged to attend.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q– Would these “pilots” be city employees or contracted?

A– Police Employees


Q– What is the level of certification and training that “pilots” have?

A– FAA Part 107 license


Q– Would I be notified if the drone was being utilized over my property?

A– Probably not unless it was a planned incident or training and we were seeking permission


Q- How close would a public safety drone get to my house?

A– Depends on the use of the drone.  The drone pilot will operate the drone in a safe and respectful manor to limit the potential of damage or intrusion of ones privacy.  


Q– How would public safety decide if a drone would be launched?

A– A supervisor is the final decision maker on the use of the drones.


Q- Will there be special markings that would identify public safety drones?

A– Not that would be able to be seen from the ground


Q-  Will the drones be armed?

A-  No


For additional questions about the public safety drone program, please email Sgt Malterud or call (303)651-8734.



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