EENA & DJI Celebrate Drone Search and Rescue in Iceland

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DJI and the European Emergency Number Association (EENA) have for two years been collaborating to see how drone technology can be used by public safety organizations. Today they announced an expansion of that partnership and celebrated a successful drone-assisted rescue mission in Iceland.

EENA is a Brussels-based NGO dedicated to improving the work of emergency services. At the organization’s annual awards ceremony in Slovenia today, the Dalvik Search & Rescue Team from Iceland received the Outstanding Tech for Safety Award.

As detailed in the short film below, the Dalvik Search & Rescue Team used a DJI drone to rescue two tourists stranded in the Icelandic wilderness.

Iceland is something of a drone photographer’s paradise; it’s good to see local first responders using the technology for more than just enjoying the scenery. The publication of the film is a clear example of DJI’s shift of focus, from the relative novelty of creative flights to potentially life-saving missions.

Most recently the Chinese industry leader launched a dual thermal-optical imaging camera – the Zenmuse XT2 – designed to be incorporated into fire service operations.

Integrating drones with emergency services

EENA and DJI have also today announced an expansion of their current partnership. As part of the agreement, the two will work together to assist emergency agencies with the integration and deployment of drone technology.

On the EENA-DJI partnership, Gary Machado, EENA Executive Director, said: “I am incredibly proud to see how far we have come, bringing extraordinary results which help save lives of ordinary citizens. Drone technology is one way we can enhance the capabilities of rescue services and keep citizens safer.”

Romeo Durscher, DJI’s director of public safety integration, said, “DJI’s partnership with EENA has allowed us to study and document how drone technology helps rescue services reduce the time, risk and cost inherent in their dangerous work.”

“By responding faster, operating more efficiently and keeping emergency workers safer, drones have the potential to become standard equipment in emergency response. As DJI and EENA continue developing protocols to bring these benefits to emergency workers, it is gratifying to know our work will help ensure drones can save taxpayer money, reduce operational risks, and save more lives.”

Real world tests to follow in the UK and Ireland

The next phase of the EENA and DJI collaboration will use real-world testing of drones in an effort to guide standards for the use of emergency drones across Europe.

The project, says DJI, “will deliver clear tactical recommendations for using drones, as well as recommendations to lawmakers, regulators and training bodies about how to consider drone use.”

Two testing grounds for the pilot study will be with the Donegal Mountain Rescue Team in Ireland and the Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service in the UK.

Sure, it’s not quite Iceland, but there’s still plenty of challenging variety to be found with firefighting and search and rescue missions across the areas’ cities, mountains and coastal waters.


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