California Police Department Uses Drones as First Responders -
California Police Department Uses Drones as First Responders
Posted 13 Apr 2019 03:10 PM


The Chula Vista Police Department has used drones to respond to more than 400 emergency calls.

A California Police department is using drones to respond to emergency calls before officers arrive at the scene.

The Chula Vista Police Department has a fleet of f four drones and, instead of using them as part of an investigation after the crime occurs, the department is sending drones to the scene of an emergency call ahead of officers while the crime may still be in progress.

The department's Drone Program began in December 2015 and has evolved since then. The drones are now used as "first responders," making the program the first in the nation to utilize the technology in such a way.

The department deploys the devices from the rooftop of its headquarters to 911 calls and other reports of emergency incidents.

The camera on board streams video in high definition back to the police headquarters in real time. The drone is controlled by a trained critical incident manager who communicates with officers in the field, giving them information about the situation. The drone can also stream video to first responders' cellphones, giving them a direct look at the scene.

"This Drones as a First Responder System is transformational by providing first responders with something they have never had before, a faster perspective of the situation since the drones are deployed to the incident and arrive well before ground units," the department said of the program on its website.

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