(CBP photo)

Drone Use by Public Safety Agencies Increased 82 Percent Over Past Year

An update to the Bard College’s Center for the Study of the Drone’s database of public safety agencies with drones estimates that at least 910 state and local police, sheriff, fire, and emergency services agencies in the U.S. have acquired drones.

In this revised count, researchers uncovered more agencies that had acquired drones prior to 2017 than previously reported, and estimated that the number of public safety agencies with drones has increased by approximately 82 percent in the last year alone. All told, there are now more than twice as many agencies that own drones as there are agencies that own manned aircraft in the U.S.

This database includes all known law enforcement and emergency response agencies that are reported to own at least one drone. It may not, however, reflect the total number of agencies that have used drones at some point, as it is not uncommon for an agency to receive drone services from nearby agencies or to contract the services of a local drone operator. This database is based on a combination of local media reports and government records.

Read the report at the Center for the Study of the Drone

The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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