Drones to Fly Over the Beltway? | NBC4 Washington

Drones to Fly Over the Beltway?

The technology could be used to conduct aerial surveillance of high-traffic areas

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    NEWSLETTERS

    (Published Tuesday, May 1, 2012)

    Chief of Fairfax County Police David Rohrer spoke on drone technology during a WTOP radio program Monday morning. “In general terms, I think the technology will be in the region at some point for monitoring traffic.”

    Drones? In Fairfax County? Over the Beltway?

    Actually, it’s best described as a piece of flying styrofoam with a camera and will allow local law enforcement to conduct aerial surveillance.

    Dr. John Langford of Aurora Flight Services in Manassas says his demo, “Skate”, is a lightweight drone that can stay aloft for an hour on a re-chargeable battery.

    Although these unmanned aerial vehicles aren’t cheap, ringing up at about $2,000 each, they do offer new options for law enforcement in difficult situations.

    Dr. Langford sees them being deployed during dangerous high-speed pursuits or hostage incidents.