UK police in Surrey and Sussex have been granted more than €300,000 to acquire four new drones as part of a trial to clamp down on crime.
Naturally, these won’t be any old drones. The Aeryon SkyRanger sUAS is to be used; this model has patrolled the skies at Gatwick Airport since 2014. They are capable of navigating in strong winds and can stay airbourne for 50 minutes on a full charge.
Head of Surrey and Sussex Police Operations, Steve Barry, says that they will keep the public informed as to how the drones are being used. "Our drone operations will be overt, open and transparent, and we will use all outlets available to us to ensure the public are informed of our drone use,” he said.
"We have consulted extensively with the Information Commissioners Office and the Office of Surveillance Commissioners, both of whom are satisfied with the approach we have taken over privacy and data protection."
The drones are being bought using funds from the Police Innovation Fund, according to the Police Oracle. This will be the largest trial of police drones in England.