Drones are often in the news for being nuisances or potentially dangerous to aircraft, but they've also brought quality aerial cameras into the hands of thousands, including rescuers. Recent research by DJI indicates that drones saved the lives of at least 65 people last year, and they have dramatic footage of some of the rescues.
The report has gathered the stories of 27 rescues on five continents and includes some incredible footage. Of course, one of the main advantages of drones is the vastly lower cost compared to a helicopter, but another benefit is the reduced response times, as first responders can carry a device to the scene rather than waiting for a helicopter. Check out some of the dramatic footage below:
Police responded to a car crash on a rural road in the middle of the night, but couldn't locate the driver. An Inspire 1 with a thermal imaging camera eventually located the victim unconscious in a ditch a distance from the crash.
Shelby County, Indiana
A drone was called in after crews spent two hours searching for a missing woman with schizophrenia. The drone found her in five minutes.
A drone delivered life belts to fisherman stranded by flash flooding.
Douglas County, Colorado
A drone located two missing hikers and their dog.
A drone helped locate two Polish tourists stranded on a mountain after rescuers were unable to find them.
While drones are still finding a balance with society and regulation, it's great to see them being used for saving lives as well.