Drones save lives – survey of lifesaving drone activity

Drones save lives


First study of lifesaving drone activity released by DJI

Three years ago today the first International Drone Day took place. We founded International Drone Day in order to bring attention to the many positive things drones are used for.

On the anniversary of that event – where tens of thousands of people worldwide made it their mission to show that “drones are good” – DJI has released the first-ever survey of lifesaving drone activity.


Drones save lives

International Drone Day founders Sarah and David Oneal with the Roswell Flight Test Crew’s Lucidity at the first International Drone Day



What types of rescue situations are drones used in?

DJI’s research shows that drones have rescued at least 59 people from life-threatening conditions in 18 separate incidents worldwide. The rate of lifesaving drone work now averages almost one per week. Pretty impressive!

Rescues were made on land, on water, and in flooded areas. Drones were used to locate missing people, and carry supplies including life jackets and rescue ropes. People were found on snowbanks, in swamps, on beaches, and in boats.


Drones save lives

Quavas Hart used his drone to rescue a disabled man and dog in a flood


More than one third of people rescued were saved by drones operated by civilian volunteers who offered their assistance to help professional rescue personnel.  This shows that drones are becoming accepted as useful tools which give real value to public safety efforts. It also shows that there is a case for rescue services to increase their use of drones.

DJI’s Policy and Legal Affairs Department stated “The clear conclusion is that drones are regularly saving lives around the world. This is occurring even though professional rescue crews are just beginning to adopt UAS technology, and in many cases are relying on bystanders or volunteers to provide lifesaving assistance”.

DJI’s findings are based on a survey of media reports, and by their own admission is likely to undercount the real numbers.


What does this mean for the use of drones?

There is no doubt that drones save lives. This opens up interesting questions about regulations of the use of drones. DJI’s view is that regulations that make it more challenging or burdensome to use drone technology as tools to help save lives represent a net detriment to public safety. Through this lens, how should we see

Through this lens, how should we see drone licenses and tests? Will they limit the number of people that choose to learn about drones and thus be in a position to provide assistance in emergency situations?


How can you get involved?

In The Drone Invasion documentary we show how drones save lives in search and rescue missions. We look at the case of a drone being used to locate a submerged vehicle, and we speak to Jim Bowers, founder of the incredible S.W.A.R.M. (Search With Aerial Rc Multi-rotor) network whose members volunteer in search and rescue missions.

The Drone Invasion is available to watch on Amazon.


Drones save lives

Jim Bowers, founder of S.W.A.R.M., is featured in The Drone Invasion



How you can be involved in International Drone Day

The third annual International Drone Day takes place Saturday May 6th 2017.

Here is how you can be involved! –

  • Put on an event in your area – contact us at info@thatdroneshow.com to find out what’s involved
  • Attend your local event – new Teams are being added all the time so keep checking the International Drone Day map to find one near you
  • Sponsor International Drone Day – contact us at info@thatdroneshow.com and we will figure out which package best suits you

We are again partnering with the Academy of Model Aeronautics for International Drone Day. They are are opening up their fields to any Team Captain that wishes to hold an event.



Drones save lives

We are proud to partner with the AMA for International Drone Day

Sarah and David Oneal are available to speak on all things drone.