Met Police to use drones to counter dangerous drivers

The Met Police are to use the Aeryon Skyranger drone to follow and chase down dangerous drivers

Aeryon Skyranger Drone

THE Met Police have announced they are to use high powered drones to chase down dangerous drivers and criminals this week. The Aeryon Skyranger will be used to track and target dangerous drivers and help to coordinate ground teams, gathering intel via a high definition camera.

The move comes as part of Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s plan to eradicate deaths on the capital’s roads by 2041 and is being trialled by the force between 22nd and 26th July. A spokesman said: “We can confirm that a police drone is being used to support the Roads and Traffic Policing Command activity as part of the Vision Zero week of action to reduce deaths and injury on London's roads. The drone is being used to support the gathering of intelligence and evidence.”

The drone is already in use around the world by both police forces, disaster management companies and military forces, clocking up over 100,000 hours of operational flights in over 30 countries worldwide. The drone has a range of up to 10km and a run time of between 30-50 minutes, and a maximum flight ceiling of 15,000 feet above sea level.

The Met is turning to the drone as a more cost-effective and safe alternative to the highspeed car chase as the drone can follow a target at a greater distance, relaying the position of the person to ground-teams who can then apprehend and arrest the suspect.

The move will also mean big savings for the force as launching a conventional helicopter to follow a target, in the same way, costs thousands of pounds and is a much more noticeable object in the sky. The overhead threat of a police helicopter (or a chasing police car) could cause a criminal to drive or ride even more quickly, causing an increased danger to members of the public. The near-silent drone can hover at an almost unnoticeable height, hopefully negating some of this risk.

Is this a case of big brother gone mad, or sensible use of the latest tech that could save money and lives?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Ducati Panigale V4S - 2019 Review