Astana, Kazakhstan, 27-28 February 2019 – Experts from the Central Asian countries tested and studied the options of using drones for prevention of and response to emergency situations.
The Center for Emergency Situations and Disaster Risk Reduction in Kazakhstan in cooperation with the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) organized a seminar where experts in emergency situations and specialists of the companies producing Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV/drones) discussed technical characteristics and tested the options of using drones in cases of emergencies.
The region of Central Asia is prone to almost all types of natural and technological threats including earthquakes, floods, landslides, mudflows, avalanches, droughts and extreme temperatures. Therefore, the issue of prevention and response to emergency situations with use of modern technologies is growing critical for this region.
“Working in almost all countries of the world UNICEF studies the perspectives of using drones for providing assistance to children, the most vulnerable part of population, and families they live in – to improve their living conditions, keep them off of health and life threatening situations, teach them necessary everyday skills” – pointed out Yuri Oksamitniy, UNICEF Representative in Kazakhstan.
«In fact, what we see in practice, most vulnerable to any emergency situations are children and elderly people. Therefore our task – by all means to avoid and prevent dangerous situations. Involvement and use of modern technologies come handy with Kazakhstan’s mandate. Let’s use already existing technologies for disaster risk reduction” – said Valery Petrov, director of the Center for Emergency Situations and Disaster Risk Reduction (based in Almaty international organization).
Next day after a seminar all its participants went to a testing site to see drones’ capabilities in on-time location of wildfire in forests and search for potential victims. The testing took place in Zhambyl rayon (district) of Almaty oblast (province), coordination and support provided by local administration.
According to drones developers, there are several types of drones which should be chosen according goals and tasks to be performed. For example, drones used for monitoring areas prone to high disaster risks and situation awareness will be different from drones used for search and rescue operations. Therefore, there are plans to conduct several additional sets of drone testing flights.
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