As drones become safer, cheaper and more reliable, there’s one field that has found tremendous success in using drones: law enforcement.
Drone and camera technology allows law enforcement officials to have a better viewpoint of chaotic situations where having ground personnel is too risky. Aerial points of view also allow post-accident or crime scenes to be better evaluated to help understand the timeline of events that took place.
First responder situations are the 6th most common use for drones according to a report from Skylogic Research, behind other popular uses like aerial photography, mapping and construction.
But use of drones by law enforcement is also highly controversial. A pair of drones donated to the Los Angeles Police Department was actually locked away for three years, collecting dust after a public outcry over the idea of police using the controversial technology.
But it seems drones are here to stay, and plenty of police departments are adopting them.
The team at dronefly.com, a commercial drone distributor, created a graphic to show all the ways law enforcement teams are using drones:
Here are some of the types of drones law enforcement teams are using:
And as cameras improve to include optical or zoom lenses, as well as thermal cameras, they are increasingly becoming a useful tool.