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Drones in Firefighting

Firefighters are increasingly turning to drones as a tool to aid in their operations. These unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are equipped with cameras and sensors that allow firefighters to quickly and safely assess a fire and make informed decisions about how to best contain and extinguish it.

One of the biggest advantages of using drones in firefighting is the ability to quickly survey a fire from the air. Drones can fly over a fire and provide real-time images and video footage that can be used to map the fire's spread, identify hot spots, and track the movement of smoke and ash. This information is crucial for firefighters on the ground, as it allows them to better understand the scope of the fire and make informed decisions about how to best contain and extinguish it.

Another benefit of using drones in firefighting is the ability to safely and quickly access areas that may be too dangerous for firefighters to enter. Drones can fly into burning buildings, for example, and provide images and video footage of the interior, which can be used to determine the location of hotspots and potential hazards. This information can be used to plan evacuation routes and make decisions about how to safely and effectively fight the fire.

According to the National Wildfire Coordinating Group, in 2019, drones were used in more than 1,700 wildland fire incidents across the United States, and that number continues to grow. The use of drones in firefighting is expected to increase in the coming years, as more and more fire departments invest in these valuable tools including:

Search and Rescue: The Los Angeles Fire Department has deployed drones to search for missing persons and to drop supplies to firefighters on the ground. The drones have been used in various emergency situations such as wildfire, floods, and earthquakes.

The Houston Fire Department: The Houston Fire Department has used drones to quickly assess the damage caused by large fires and to plan evacuation routes. Drones equipped with cameras and sensors have provided firefighters with real-time images and video footage of the fires, which has helped them to better understand the scope of the fires and make informed decisions about how to best contain and extinguish them.

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department: The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department in Virginia, USA has been using drones to help with search and rescue operations, as well as to inspect buildings, bridges and other infrastructure. They also use the drones in emergency situations such as gas leaks, chemical spills, and hazardous materials incidents.

Types of Drones and Payloads Used in Firefighting

The most common drones and payloads used in firefighting are quadcopters with thermal and multispectral cameras. They can be used to monitor fire intensity, locate hotspots and determine the direction of fire spread. They can also be used to map the terrain, monitor water resources, and provide real-time situational awareness as mentioned above.

DJI Mavic 3 Thermal

Key features:

1. 30x Zoom Thermal Imaging Camera: The DJI Mavic 3 thermal provides a 30x zoom thermal camera, allowing you to capture high-quality thermal images and videos from a distance.

2. Dual Vision System: Thanks to its dual vision system, which combines both optical and thermal data, you can gather the most accurate readings possible.

3. Advanced Thermal Sensitivity: With its advanced thermal sensitivity, the drone can detect objects that are even further away and in lower temperatures.

4. Intelligent Flight Modes: It also comes with intelligent flight modes such as Point of Interest and Follow Me, allowing you to capture thermal images and videos with ease.

5. DJI Thermal Mobile App: The Mavic 3 thermal also comes with its own mobile app, allowing you to access a range of features such as thermal imaging data, location tracking, and more.

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DJI Mavic 3T

DJI Matrice 300 RTK

Key features:

1. Robust, foldable airframe: The Matrice 300 RTK is built with a robust, foldable airframe that is capable of withstanding strong winds and harsh weather conditions.

2. Long Flight Time: Offers up to 55 minutes of flight time, allowing for extended flight missions.

3. High-precision RTK: Comes equipped with a high-precision RTK module and a dual-band GNSS receiver for centimeter-level accuracy.

4. Triple Camera Payload: Supports up to three camera payloads, allowing you to capture multiple angles at once.

5. DJI Pilot App: The M300 RTK comes with the DJI Pilot App, which provides a comprehensive suite of tools to help you manage and monitor your aircraft.

6. Intelligent Flight Modes: Offers multiple intelligent flight modes, including Point of Interest, Waypoint, and TapFly, to make complex maneuvers easier.

7. Advanced Obstacle Sensing: Features advanced obstacle sensing, allowing it to navigate around obstacles in its path.

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M300 RTK

DJI Matrice 30T

Key features:

1. Flight Performance: providing up to 40 minutes of flight time, and a 23 m/s maximum speed, the M30T is ideal for extended missions. 

2. Intelligent Flight Modes: such as TapFly, ActiveTrack, Point of Interest, Waypoint, and more.

3. Dual Battery System: The aircraft is equipped with a dual battery system for extended flight time.

4. Obstacle Avoidance: Equipped with sensors to help prevent collision.

5. Flight Autonomy: Utilizes Flight Autonomy technology to help you fly safely and efficiently.

6. Flight Performance: provides up to 40 minutes of flight time, and a 23 m/s maximum speed.

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DJI M30T Canada

Zenmuse H20N

Key features:

1. Dual optical zoom sensors: The DJI Zenmuse H20N features two 20MP 1" CMOS sensors with dual optical zoom, providing up to 4x lossless zoom and up to 32x digital zoom.

2. High image quality: It features 20MP still images and 8K video recording at up to 30fps and 4K video recording at up to 60fps.

3. Intelligent features: Supports DJI's intelligent features including Spotlight, Point of Interest, ActiveTrack, and QuickShots.

4. Enhanced flight stability: It utilizes DJI's proprietary stabilization technology to provide smooth, steady footage in any environment.

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DJI Zenmuse H20N

How Measur Can Help Fire Departments

Measur Drones specializes in providing drone technology solutions for various industries, including fire departments. Here are a few ways that we can help fire departments adopt drone technology:

Training: we provide training for fire departments on how to safely and effectively operate drones. This includes training on the proper use of cameras and sensors.

Customized Solutions: we offer customized solutions that are tailored to the specific needs of fire departments. This can include the integration of thermal imaging cameras, long-range communications, and other specialized equipment that is designed to improve the effectiveness of firefighting operations.

Maintenance and Support: with our ongoing maintenance and support for drone systems, we ensure that your drones are always in good working condition and ready to be used in an emergency situation.

Safety Guidance: we can also assist fire departments in complying with legal regulations and safety standards for UAVs operations.

For industry leading technology within the commercial UAV drones, contact a member of our team today to find the right equipment for your application.


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