Is it time for Police Drones?

It must be nearly time for police drones, right? OK, we’re limited by their air time (come on guys, invent a better battery already!). But think about this: drones that are preprogrammed to fly routes around crime hotspots.

They would have collision avoidance and fly below civilian and commercial airspace. Forward and rear-facing camera, and infrared. 3G/4G capability, and they are controlled and monitored by Police staff in a control room. They fly their loop, come back to the station to charge, then head out again. When the operator sees trouble, he sends out officers in cars, and follows the offenders with the drone. It’s equipped with police lights, spotlights and a loudspeaker. It could fly over badly lit parks and help prevent rape. These things are fast, too. Check out some of the FPV Racing videos on YouTube:

They can follow and track the offender while the police are on the way. If they crash or run out of juice, it would be an offense to mess with them, and they have GPS tracking so the police can retrieve them.

We’re not at the point where we can or should arm these things, and end up in a Robocop-style world, but the sudden appearance of an airborne police presence with lights flashing and loudspeaker blaring would be enough to freak out most attackers and burglars.