CHEYENNE – Laramie County Fire District 1 recently purchased a DJI Matrice 210 Version 2 Unmanned Aerial System, also known as a drone.

This technology gives responders a whole new realm of information that previously was unavailable, which increases safety, situational awareness, and can decrease the duration of certain emergencies and events, according to a news release.

With the Matrice 210 UAS, the fire district gains thermal imaging capability and imagery and videography access. Firefighters also gain the capability to fly a radiation detector and a gas detector down range to take readings without exposing any people to a potentially hazardous environment. Mapping of an area can also be conducted with the UAS.

In search-and-rescue operations, the drone will be able to cover a large area in a fraction of the time that current tactics take to complete. In grass fires, the aerial view will be able to steer firefighters where to go first to provide better safety to the surrounding community.

Any flight of the UAS will be conducted under FAA CFR Part 107, which has a multitude of parameters in which an individual can or cannot fly. Each member that flies the UAS will have their FAA CFR Part 107 license, as well as an interdepartmental written test and skills evaluation, according to the release.

This UAS is available to all of Laramie County emergency responders through mutual aid agreements.

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