Connecticut tests "pandemic drones" that monitor social distancing, body temperature

by Jordyn Pair · Apr 23rd, 2020 12:20 pm

A Connecticut police department has launched "pandemic drones" in an effort to monitor social distancing efforts and track the spread of the coronavirus.

Police in Westport, Connecticut, are working with drone manufacturer Draganfly to test the drones, which have "specialized sensor and computer vision systems" that can display a person's temperature, respiratory, and heart rate. The drones are also able to identify people sneezing or coughing.

The drones will not be used around private residences, according to police.

"The Westport Police Department along with first responders around the world are looking for effective ways to ease the spread of COVID-19 and keep their communities safe," Westport Chief of Police Foti Koskinas said. "This technology not only enhances the safety of our officers and the public, but the concept of using drones remains a go-to technology for reaching the most remote areas with little to no manpower needed. It also helps our officers acquire decision quality data they need to make the best choices in any given situation."

The Westport Police Department has had a drone program since 2016.


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