The Irmo Police Department recently was presented with a demonstration by Stephen Baxley, Owner of AirWorx Unmanned Solutions who outfits law enforcement with aerial drones throughout the state. Baxley demonstrated the capabilities of the drone which has a flight time of up to 35 minutes per charge and can reach speeds of 45 mph. A pilot for the drone must be FAA certified and receive proper training.
The drone is equipped with a dual vision camera system that allows infrared, zoom and would have a speaker and spotlight potential. The command center allows the pilot and others to view on a large screen that is visible in bright sunlight and doesn’t have to be shaded to be seen. The drone will return to base if it loses connection with its pilot and has an automatic obstacle avoidance system built-in.
“It’s not just about looking for bad guys,” said Irmo Police Chief Bobby Dale. “It’s a community assistance and public safety tool that can help us find missing citizens, getting eyes on a structure fire or traffic accident and being able to observe events that may be too hazardous for an officer.”
Irmo Lake Murray Rotary will hold a golf tournament on April 19 to help raise funds to go to the purchase of the drone and the Irmo Police Department Community Foundation is currently raising funds to help with the purchase. Between the two organizations, it is anticipated that Irmo PD will have a new toy in the near future.
“We’re hoping enough funds will be raised to allow us to make that purchase,” said Chief Bobby Dale. “We’re thankful for this kind of support.”
The cost of the drone would be around $14,000.
An AirWorx drone capable of performing multi-tasks and equipped with many safety features.