Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service and Nottinghamshire Police have joined forces to launch a new operational drone resource today (6 January).
The drones will be available for both Nottinghamshire Police and Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) to use for a range of operational incidents and scenarios, delivering an improved service across the communities they serve.
A dedicated police drone vehicle, along with trained police pilots will be available to NFRS 24/7 and will provide coverage for both fire and police colleagues to call upon if required when a spontaneous incident has been assessed and authorised by the Incident Commander.
A diary function will also be available for when the service has pre-planned operations in place. The drone team will assist as an additional function alongside the emergency services that have already been deployed and will allow the opportunity to resolve incidents quicker.
Fire officers have been trained on how the drones work, what the processes are and have been working together with the police pilots to create effective and smooth communications between the two services.
Station Manager Christian Brown said: "This is a great opportunity for us to work alongside Nottinghamshire Police and make the most of the drone capabilities.
"The drones allow us to make more detailed decisions and investigate incidents further. It will provide us with a clearer picture of the incident and help us to keep both communities and firefighters safer."
Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire's Police and Crime Commissioner, said: "This is good news for our communities and will help these two emergency services to be in the right place at the right time. The 'eye in the sky' will help to find missing people, deter and track down offenders, as well as providing greater coverage in more remote areas.
"People have told me that they were keen to see drones helping the police with their work so I was pleased that my budget for 2019/20 included this investment in technology."
The joint drone is the latest in a range of collaboration projects between NFRS and Notts Police; other successful joint initiatives include a shared welfare vehicle for firefighters and police officers to use at incidents, joint school's education and road safety initiatives, and co-location of fire and police staff at Highfields Fire Station in Beeston.