The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) flew a quadcopter drone during a 4-alarm fire in the Bronx last night. According to a tweet by the department, this is the first time it has deployed a drone during a fire incident.
Firefighters used the drone to help confirm verbal reports about the structure’s roof.
“The roof started to fail and we had a lot of great radio reports but that’s only verbal, so with the drone we had good visual pictures and it really helped us make decisions to put this fire out and keep our members safe," said FDNY Deputy Assistant Chief Dan Donoghue in a Facebook post
, describing the first-ever use of the FDNY drone.
Since flying drones in NYC is illegal, FDNY must obtain permission from the FAA to fly each time it uses its firefighter-drone. According to the New York Times
, the department has an agreement with the FAA that speeds up the process of attaining permission to fly (apparently it should only take about 15 minutes to get approval).