In recent years, the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UVA), more commonly known as ‘drones’, has seen a huge rise in popularity as a means of optimizing security and surveillance across a variety of industries.
The units are self-driving in that they do not have a pilot on board and are instead operated either by remote control or onboard computers. They each have a camera that sits underneath, and while the overall size of the drone may be tiny in comparison to the traditional ways of acquiring aerial imagery using helicopters, they pack a punch when it comes to delivering high resolution imagery and real-time video footage.
Drones have long been part of military operations but the integration of their use into security and surveillance operations has come with a whole host of benefits to both the commercial and public sector. From land and property surveillance, to event security or emergency response and much more, we discuss the advantages of utilizing drones as a high-tech way of minimizing risks in a huge range of settings.
Benefits and Uses of Drones for Security
In situations where speed is required, there is simply no contest between deploying a human vs a drone to reach the security or safety risk. This could help you track the path of an escaping intruder without having to begin a chase on foot or it may help you view an emergency situation in record time giving you more time to understand the situation and decide on the most appropriate course of action.
The remote-control aspect of drones allows you to monitor security risks from the safety of a control room or portable device. Not only is this safer, as you can maintain distance from any issues, it could also save on staffing costs where large areas need to be monitored and if security staff is limited.
High resolution aerial imagery
There is little benefit to imagery when it comes to security if the image is of poor quality. Thankfully, manufacturers of drones used for security purposes have certainly not scrimped on the spec of the camera. The high-resolution imagery, paired with appropriate software, allows image data to be captured both in video and in high spec stills from freeze frames. The high-resolution data can be viewed in real-time or after an event, which may assist police investigations and increase the potential to make arrests.
There are many situations where it is useful to understand the risk before you potentially put yourself and/or others in danger and site inspections is certainly one of those. A drone allows you to obtain imagery of potentially dangerous or difficult to reach areas, as can be the case on a building or construction site for example, with ease.
Real-time tracking benefits a variety of settings. It could help you monitor potential security risks and dangers at a large-scale event as they arise so that you can act quickly, or it could be used to track the whereabouts of an intruder on your property or land. The tracking data could also provide vital evidence in assisting police should an investigation be needed.
When it comes to aerial imagery, the competitor to a drone is the helicopter. Little else in the modern world can allow us to see such vast areas in such a small amount of time and when you consider the cost of using a helicopter, a drone wins hands down.
The cameras used in surveillance drones can also provide thermal imagery. This can be beneficial in crowded places with the potential to pick up fever, or even help to notice defects in machinery. It also allows for quality day and night surveillance.
Here at Sovereign Fire and Security, we have worked at the forefront of the latest technology and are proud to offer temperature screening thermal solutions, which use thermal imagery to help minimize security and safety risks in a range of situations. For more on this, take a look at the information on our dedicated page.
No blind spots
With stationary cameras, such as CCTV, which act as a great deterrent and these days imagery is of exceptional quality, it simply cannot cover the same area as a drone can and has the unfortunate draw-back of a blind spot.
Many drones have the option of running on autopilot and will follow the path of a programmed route. For security, this means you can set a route that you are certain will cover all your grounds for example. This could be especially handy at night when you may choose not to have someone manually controlling the drone.
Considerations for Using Drones
Laws and legislation
Arguably the most important consideration when using drones for security and surveillance is to make sure you are aware of and fully understand the laws that surround their use.
Quality of build
Surveillance drones are most commonly used outdoors so it is important to ensure yours is built to withstand the elements. You certainly don’t want a little rain to render your machine useless.
Purpose and features
The purpose of your drone will impact the type of features you require. Consider the battery life; will your drone be needed for a full-day event, just at certain times of the day or even just as an emergency response? Not all drones will offer the auto-pilot feature mentioned previously, and some will come with collision avoidance technology, which may be particularly useful in construction sites and not necessary on remote farmlands. Whatever your security needs, make sure to do your research so that a drone is fit for purpose.
Security Systems from Sovereign
From event security, site inspections, perimeter control, property surveillance, traffic surveillance and so much more, drones can provide you with a highly effective and efficient way of reducing security risks. As with any security measure, something is better than nothing and the more you have in place, the less that risk becomes.
Here at Sovereign Fire and Security, our support is available both in the UK and on an international level to suit your every need; from commercial clients, to protecting homes, families and individuals.
To find out more about how our range of fire and security systems can help protect you, please contact a member of our friendly team today.