Drones: The Life Saving Tools Of Firefighters And Police

Drones: The Life Saving Tools Of Firefighters And Police

April 09, 2020

Drones: The Life Saving Tools Of Firefighters And Police

Drones have been used in a variety of industries from construction to inspection, providing technological capabilities that save time and money. However, drones have become particularly vital tools for fire fighting and police activities as well. When the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) or Regional Police forces need to rely on technology to help them assess situations and search for missing persons, drones provide invaluable help that saves lives.

Drone Applications:

Law Enforcement—Police—RCMP

RCMP officers are often required to put themselves in harm’s way during the course of their jobs in order to protect citizens and uphold the law. However, with the advanced technological capabilities of drone technology, the RCMP can gain the advantage in many risky situations. DJI drone technology provides them with remote imaging tools so they can assess a situation and plan their response accordingly. Drones drastically improve the safety of both the RCMP and bystanders alike.

Drones are incredibly useful in aiding accident forensics. DJI drone solutions can quickly map areas immediately after an incident to preserve the scene for further analysis. This can provide the Regional Police with vital clues that can aid the apprehension of criminals. By using 3D maps or aerial LIDAR point clouds, forensic units can gain a detailed view of a site and provide an unbiased, visual report to the courts. This unbiased report can strengthen their case and help them preserve the law.


Reconnaissance is a specialty of drone technology. DJI Enterprise Drone solutions provide remote visuals of a dangerous area to give officers critical information of a situation. When performing reconnaissance, officers often need to put themselves in harm’s way in order to scout an area and provide vital intel about a situation. By using a thermal sensor, officers can gain visuals through glass and other obstructions, preventing officers from risking their lives when scouting an area.

Fire Fighting

Fire fighting requires split second decision-making and nerves of steel in order to save lives while maintaining the safety of firefighters themselves. It also requires a delicate balance of heroism to save lives trapped in a burning structure and caution to prevent the flames from spreading.

The more information that firefighters have before they run into a burning building, the safer they will be. DJI drone technology brings rapid imaging tools that provide critical information to best attack the fire while maintaining firefighter safety.DJI drone solutions give teams a real-time 360-degree view of a burning building. Regular cameras can’t always see through the smoke and other obstructions that are present during a blaze. By using thermal imaging to monitor fire progress and spot victims through the thick smoke, commanders can efficiently target attacks without risking the lives of firefighters. Thermal and zoom imagery are also effective at helping commanders immediately locate hotspots as well as zoom in to check on their teams and the status of resources.

Search and Rescue

Search and Rescue operations can be just as dangerous as other law enforcement or fire fighting activities. Response teams often have to navigate through vast, challenging and dangerous terrain to save lives. Visibility is often compromised in these dangerous areas, forcing team members to go in blind. DJI drone technology provides semi-automated tools that quickly scout these regions and locate those in danger without risking members of the team.

When performing a search and rescue operation, time is of the essence. Teams need to move as quickly as they can to save the lives of those stranded in dangerous terrain. DJI drone solutions glide over elevated landscapes to quickly locate individuals. High-powered thermal and zoom cameras allow teams to identify heat signatures through thick brush and snow, then take a closer look for confirmation. This increased visibility helps them locate individuals before too much time has passed.

Many search and rescue operations take place in the ocean, where visibility and scouting methods are much more complicated. DJI drone solutions efficiently scan the ocean for those lost at sea. Search teams can use thermal and zoom cameras to sweep large bodies of water even in low visibility, locate heat signatures, and initiate a rescue.

Sometimes the areas that search and rescue teams have to search are too big to search in the time that’s needed to protect those in danger. DJI drone solutions provide a visual feed of large disaster areas to help incident commanders make informed decisions. With a drone’s live stream, they can more effectively direct on-the-ground teams and communicate the situation to off-site stakeholders.

Public Safety

Natural disasters happen all the time that threaten public safety and require the response of trained professionals. When a national disaster does hit, we rely on response teams to instantly come together to save lives. DJI drone solutions provide EMTs with rapid data collection tools, helping them navigate infrastructure to get to injured persons. Emergency responders can use drone technology to assess the damage of critical infrastructure to help them stay safe while getting to those affected by the disaster.

Disaster management isn’t only about responding to disasters after they struck, but preparing them beforehand as well. DJI drone solutions generate detailed maps of jurisdictions that help teams prepare for future disasters. By using 3D models of critical sites, these teams can create the best emergency response plans to deal with simulated disasters. Drones can also help with rebuilding from disaster, helping communities come back together and rebuild damaged infrastructure. DJI drone solutions collect the visual data of assets and areas affected by disaster. This data can be used to assess the damage and plan what repairs are needed to rebuild. Insurers can also use automated mapping missions to quickly prepare and conduct missions to analyze damage across multiple cities, giving them accurate data to provide the help that cities need.

Drone Technology:


The Matrice 300 RTK features advanced AI based capabilities that are designed keeping Public Safety applications in mind. The 300 RTK has an incredible 55-minute maximum flight time and a long range of 15 kms. The transmission system is powered by OcuSync Enterprise that eliminates interference to provide the best control and video downlink. Capable of auto-switching between the 2.4GHz and 5.8GHz bands, the 300 can maintain a reliable connection and optimum signal performance. Thanks to this new transmission system, the Matrice 300 RTK provides 1080p live video transmission from up to 3 payloads at a time.

The Matrice 300 RTK comes equipped with the best obstacle avoidance system DJI has to offer with dual vision sensors backed up by TOF sensors on all six sides of the aircraft to keep flights safe. DJI AirSense is a standard feature with a built-in ADS-B receiver that notifies the operator of nearby manned aircraft within a range of 20kms to improve situational awareness and safety. All essential systems on the Matrice 300 RTK have redundant modules for backup in case one fails. Dual Inertial Measurement Units (IMU), Dual Barometers, Dual RTK Antennae and GNSS modules, Dual Compasses, Dual Battery System and an advanced Dual remote controller mode are the redundant systems that the Matrice 300 RTK has. Also available is RTK based precision positioning for greater accuracy and resistance to magnetic interference thus avoiding compass errors.

When used with the Zenmuse H20 or the Zenmuse H20T, the Matrice 300 RTK provides intelligent features like PinPoint and Smart Track which were designed keeping Public Safety applications in mind. These features along with thermal imaging on the Zenmuse H20T as well as infrared night vision ensures the system is ready for any task that the RCMP or a fire department would need it for.
Featuring an extended operating temperature range of -20 to 50 degrees Celsius and IP 44 rated design on the H20 series and an IP 45 rated design for the aircraft making it dust and water resistant, the Matrice 300 RTK is ready for deployment even in inclement weather.


The DJI Matrice 200 Series V2 comes with three different drones: the Matrice 200 V2, the Matrice 210 V2, and the Matrice 210 RTK V2. The 200 is the basic DJI Matrice 200 Series platform, combining a rugged design with simple configurability. The 200 features intelligent controls including an OcuSync 2.0 system for transmission, allowing the police to switch frequencies and fly the drone up to 8 km away without losing service. The TimeSync system increases data accuracy, aligning the flight controller, camera, and GPS module with any payloads or onboard accessories. This is important to maintain the accuracy of any 3D models that the drone creates for the police to use for reconnaissance. The DJI Pilot app can also calibrate the drone’s center of gravity, and there’s even a discreet mode for unobtrusive drone operations that the RCMP need to do at night.

The DJI Matrice 210 is the more popular variant for public safety. It includes all of the same features as the 200 as well as onboard SDK compatibility and power onboard devices that increase the drone’s adaptability. The AES-256 encryption of the 210 helps keep any data that the drone transmits secure, which is needed to keep information safe when the drone is used for police missions. It also uses a FlightAutonomy system to detect and avoid obstacles, which enables the drone to fly in tight spaces and employ precision hovering.  

The 210 also has an anti-collision beacon to ensure that the drone doesn’t crash into anything, which is vital when flying in dangerous terrain or in bad weather. The DJI Matrice 210 RTK is the third in the DJI Matrice 200 Series, with all the capabilities of the 210 in addition to high-performance RTK modules. These RTK modules use RTK based precision positioning to give centimeter-level accuracy in captured images. This can be especially handy in providing accurate visualizations for 3D maps of areas that aid fire fighting and search and rescue operations.  

Payloads for Matrice Series

Zenmuse XT2

The DJI Matrice 210 is the more popular variant for public safety. It includes all of the same features as the 200 as well as onboard SDK compatibility and power onboard devices that increase the drone’s adaptability. The AES-256 encryption of the 210 helps keep any data that the drone transmits secure, which is needed to keep information safe when the drone is used for police missions. It also uses a FlightAutonomy system to detect and avoid obstacles, which enables the drone to fly in tight spaces and employ precision hovering. The 210 also has an anti-collision beacon to ensure that the drone doesn’t crash into anything, which is vital when flying in dangerous terrain or in bad weather.

The thermal imaging capabilities of the XT2 are also incredibly helpful in providing night vision capabilities, allowing Regional Police to perform reconnaissance and surveillance at night. With the thermal imaging Zenmuse XT2 camera, search and rescue teams can search through foliage and locate individuals in the dark.

Zenmuse Z30

One of the most important ways that drones can help police and firefighters is by giving them a closer look at areas that would be dangerous for them to go alone. The Zenmuse Z30 long-range zoom camera has an optical zoom up to 30x and a digital zoom up to 6x. This zoom technology eliminates the risk to both the police and to the drone technology. First responders and firefighters can quickly get an overview of a scene and use the zoom technology to gain accurate and specific intelligence to help them develop a plan.

Wingsland Z15 spotlight

The Wingsland Z15 is a bright, 3-axis gimbal spotlight that provides critical lighting at night or in lowlight conditions. When the police and firefighters need visibility to help their teams gain an aerial overview over a large area, the Wingsland Z15 can provide visibility of up to 150 m. This can be used to help guide the public to a safe place after a fire or natural disaster as well as to help search and rescue teams locate missing persons.

U10 Methane detector

Hazmat operations often require responders to plan and implement emergency responses when hazardous materials have been released. The U10 Methane detector can be integrated with the DJI Matrice Series drones to detect CH4 from up to 100m away. This can be vital in keeping emergency responders safe from suspected gas leakages and allowing them to find alternate routes to reach injured individuals after a disaster.

DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise

The DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise series consists of two platforms: the Mavic 2 Enterprise with powerful zoom capability and the Mavic 2 Enterprise Dual with thermal imaging. The zoom and thermal technologies of the DJI Mavic series can be used in public safety just as the Zenmuse Z30 and the Zenmuse XT2 camera can, although the Mavic 2 Enterprise Dual is a much cheaper option. The M2E series is also smaller and easier to deploy than the Matrice 200 Series, allowing firefighters to navigate it into tight spaces to help them gain visibility in burning buildings.

The M2E spotlight works similarly to the Wingsland Z15 in that it can direct lost persons or enhance vision in lowlight areas during search and rescue operations. The M2E speaker also allows the police to communicate with ground teams during emergency situations. The M2E beacon is a strobe light that helps the team spot the drone from a distance in lowlight areas, ensuring that they don’t lose track of the drone during reconnaissance or search and rescue operations.

Phantom 4 Pro V2.0 & Phantom 4 RTK

The DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0 and the Phantom 4 RTK come with a high-resolution camera of 20mp that includes a mechanical shutter. Many police departments use the DJI Phantom for accident forensics by running mapping missions to 3D model the accident site. They then use the 3D model to reconstruct the accident scene for forensic analysis. The DJI Phantom ensures data accuracy and helps them search the accident for vital clues. The Phantom 4 RTK can be used if higher accuracy is required.

Saving Lives One Drone At A Time

Firefighters and police deal with high stakes situations every day. They need to be able to rely on foolproof and accurate technology to help give them as much information as possible to save lives and keep them out of harm’s way. DJI drone technology gives them incredible accuracy that helps keeps the public safe and improve the lives of Canadian citizens.