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Fire department helps community with drone

Tyler Garza, Reporter

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The Prosper fire department has added a drone to assist with fires, flooding and lost people in the community. Fire inspector Marty Nevil is the one in charge of the program.

The drone is a DJI inspire 1 V2.0 with an array of uses.

“It has fair view pro XT,” Nevil said. “And that’s an forward facing infrared camera, and it’s heavier and has more capability than your average recreational drone. It’s made for first responders.”

Other communities inspired them to add drone technology to their department.     

“We look into the technology,” Nevil said. “A lot of other cities are starting to adopt this technology. We see all the positive services it provides, and we wanted to be able to offer this to are citizens.”

The drone is capable of helping in all parts of the community.    

“If the police get a report for a missing person, we can go and search the park overhead with the infrared camera and bring up their heat signature to find them,” Nevil said. “It’s big enough to carry a life jacket. So if we have a high water situation, and someone is not able to reach something, we can drop a life jacket or rescue line to help them.”

To pilot a drone, firefighters must enroll in a 40-hour training course and the department applied for a certificate.

“We had to apply for a certificate of authorization,” said Nevil. “And that just states that we have all the best practices and safety standards in place.”   

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