A drone is set to be used to help police and firefighters at serious incidents like the blaze at the former Ranch House pub in Morecambe.
Pilots will operate the drone which will be used to help in a wide range of situations includingroad crashes, areas of flooding, moorland fires, inspecting unsafe structures, hazardous materials incidents and searching for missing persons.
The drone, based at the Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service (LFRS) training centre in Chorley, is owned and operated by Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and piloted by the existing team of incident investigation officers who already work closely with Lancashire Police to gather evidence in fire-related incidents.Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw contributed £10,000 using moneyseized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act towards the overall cost of purchasing thedevice and training staff to use it.
It will be used to provide real-time footage, particularly in hard to reach places, to give officers fromboth organisations a bird’s eye view of incidents.
Chief Fire Officer Chris Kenny said: “The unit will be incredibly useful during major incidents.”
Clive Grunshaw said: “The new drone will mean fewer officers need to be deployed for some investigations and will improve the quality of evidence gathered.
“Being able to call upon the drone to provide real time footage will save vital time, and be significantly cheaper to operate than the police helicopter.”