Scottsdale Fire Department deploys drone to help secure gas leak
PHOENIX — Scottsdale Fire Department was assisted by the use of a drone to repair a gas leak near the intersection of Larry Hughes and Madera drives in north Scottsdale on Friday.
The gas leak was quickly identified as a six-inch main that had been torn into two pieces, according to a release.
The drone was able to discover the location of the leak while keeping risk levels low for firefighter personnel.
Firefighters said the leak was emitting a jet engine-like sounding noise.
Footage from the drone also allowed firefighters to find the safest entry points to reach the leak and secure the area.
According to the release, 14 individuals who have completed FAA certification in unmanned aircraft systems can now operate three drones for the city across three battalions and an additional technical rescue unit.
“This aerial system gives members of public safety a distinct advantage when responding to various emergent situations and large-scale events,” Scottsdale Fire Department deputy Dave Folio said in the release.
“The system is equipped with thermal imaging that increases the speed of detecting heat sources in fire situations, and thereby decreases the danger to the public and the responding SFD personnel. Thermal technology is also utilized in hazmat situations to aid in the detection of hazards and provides critical information to public safety members.”
The technology can also be used for brush fires, water rescues and other technical rescues involving injured or lost hikers.