Saving Swimmers With Drones
” On Friday 7/22, German-based company Microdrones collaborated with the DLRGHorneburg/Altes Land e.V. (German Lifeguard Association) to simulate a mission to rescue a drowning swimmer, demonstrating the life-saving potential of a tactic that combines two cutting-edge technologies: unmanned aerial systems (UAVs) and RESTUBE.
Crowds watched in awe from the banks of the Elbe River as the UAV rapidly flew to the person in distress and dropped a compact rescue device called RESTUBE, which automatically inflated. The swimmer was able to grab onto the RESTUBE and float until they could be reached by a human lifeguard and brought back to safety.
“ An adult drowns in approximately 60 seconds and a child in only 30. All too often, this is not enough time for the victim to be reached by a lifeguard,” explained Christopher Fuhrhop, founder and CEO of RESTUBE. “Flying over the water is a much quicker way to reach the victim. By combining UAVs and RESTUBE flotation devices, we are able to buy the drowning person valuable time that could very well mean the difference between life and death.”
The UAV used in the rescue was the microdrones md4-1000. This quadcopter drone features specially developed motors, carbon fiber housing, highly efficient batteries, and an integrated GPS system that allow the UAV to fly and stay in position in strong winds over the water. md4-1000 was equipped with an imaging camera that streamed live to the specially trained lifeguard operating the drone, allowing them to easily see the precise location to drop the RESTUBE flotation device.”