Anyone (else) doing Security patrols with sUAV?

BigAl07

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I fly for our local depts and we often do "Aerial Security Patrols" are large events. We are looking for fights, vandalism, traffic issues etc. We are streaming the signal live to our Command Post where the Incident Command Staff is watching and making appropriate calls to action on the ground.

for those who say, "It's creepy" It's only CREEPY because you feel it's creepy. That's your personal perception but that does not make it fact except only to you. A drone is just another tool in the bag for Public Safety.
 
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I fly for our local depts and we often do "Aerial Security Patrols" are large events. We are looking for fights, vandalism, traffic issues etc. We are streaming the signal live to our Command Post where the Incident Command Staff is watching and making appropriate calls to action on the ground.

for those who say, "It's creepy" It's only CREEPY because you feel it's creepy. That's your personal perception but that does not make it fact except only to you. A drone is just another tool in the bag for Public Safety.
We have been trying to work out live streaming to our Security Operations Center here at the hospital. One of the issues we have is that we would need a cell/wi-fi hotspot to get the signal to the internet. But we are unable to get a cell/data plan approved by our IT and Finance departments. That's one of the reasons we went with the PLUS model of the P4P, because it has the built in display meaning we wouldn't need to try to get our IT department to issue us an IPad. Even if they signed off on the IPad then we have to wait for Finance to sign off on the purchase and that can take 2 months or more. We have tried YouTube and Facebook live streaming via our open wi-fi but the controller looses connection with the hospital wi-fi as soon as we get outside the buildings. At this point we are stuck with just recording the flights on the SD card and then dropping the videos to a computer in our office later.
My Director is quite upset that we can't live stream into our SOC and wants to find a way to do it but we keep getting stopped by the lack of a hotspot. We are hoping to find an answer to the problem soon.
 

BigAl07

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We have been trying to work out live streaming to our Security Operations Center here at the hospital. One of the issues we have is that we would need a cell/wi-fi hotspot to get the signal to the internet. But we are unable to get a cell/data plan approved by our IT and Finance departments. That's one of the reasons we went with the PLUS model of the P4P, because it has the built in display meaning we wouldn't need to try to get our IT department to issue us an IPad. Even if they signed off on the IPad then we have to wait for Finance to sign off on the purchase and that can take 2 months or more. We have tried YouTube and Facebook live streaming via our open wi-fi but the controller looses connection with the hospital wi-fi as soon as we get outside the buildings. At this point we are stuck with just recording the flights on the SD card and then dropping the videos to a computer in our office later.
My Director is quite upset that we can't live stream into our SOC and wants to find a way to do it but we keep getting stopped by the lack of a hotspot. We are hoping to find an answer to the problem soon.

You're going to be fighting a constant battle to Live Stream without either a HotSpot or some type of LiveU (there are others LiveU is the only one I've used though) system. We utilize Apple products so we can AirPlay to the command post and onto a large format TV.
 
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FAA Guidelines are always followed.
You say that "drones are noisy". I agree that a UAV like the Phantom does produce a bit of noise but at the average altitude of 100 to 150 or 200 feet AGL you would be surprised how little attention it attracts. Most people don't even realize that is is flying overhead as it tends to blend into traffic noise and other background noise common in the city. That said, the noise is a benefit as the UAV, when heard, lets people know that it is there, that they are potentially being watched and it serves as a deterrence to negative behavior. This is similar to why we often conduct our mobile patrols with the light bar on the roof flashing.
You mentioned the wide field of vision. Yep. That is a good thing in that we can observe more but I have been vocal on many sites lamenting the fact that DJI seems unwilling to look past cinematography cameras and give us like a FLIR thermal camera and a short range digital zoom on the Phantom model. While the camera image is great, we really desire the ability to be able to stay up at ~150' yet zoom in (say 3 or 5 x magnification) to see what a subject is carrying. Situations like when we make contact with vagrants on our properties are dangerous and it would be beneficial to be able see what is in their hands before our officers approach.
The UAV is great for patrols and a good way to observe and document but with a short range zoom and maybe an option to switch to Thermal without having to bump up to a larger, heavier platform such as in Inspire or Matrice it would be even better.
We have recently used this video to point out some of those pros and cons,
Great point. One key issue is whether the security surveillance needs to be covert, and if so, how critical that is. At 200' or so, depending on the ambient noise, and wind, a P4P won't attract that much attention, if any if there is some background noise. The operator can assist in the noise department, but not flying and stopping abruptly in Sport Mode, as this can be pretty noisy. An easy touch on the throttle, and you won;t be generating a change in the noise of the quad, which is what will really draw somebodies attention. On the beach, I've been less than 200' while observing someone, and have never had anyone look up. I think it's the wave noise covering it up.

If the surveillance is supposed to be a deterrent, I think a P4 Pro would be perfect. Anyone doing anything wrong might not notice it for a while, and when he did, and then learned it was ongoing, he'd do bad things somewhere else. The area you could cover in a given time vs a bicycle patrol is hugely better. I love the idea.
 
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I'm sorry that you took my reply as me getting personal. That is not how I meant it. I was addressing your use of stereotypical words/phrases such as "creepy", "futuristic" and descriptions such as "Extremely loud and piercing". About the only thing was missing was the old favorite, "It was taking pictures of my daughter in her swimsuit in our back yard".

You stated, Quote- "Your mission statement and overt approach is a direct conflict with that of your employer."
That is not true at all. In fact, as you saw in the profile of our Director, we are a very overt department. We are "out of the shadows" and in the public eye. I am being sent out more than ever to fly patrols. The video of Handling the Panhandler came from a day I was paid overtime to stay after my normal shift and get in some flying time around campus. I was told last week that the Administration is not seeing the UAV in use enough and wants it flying even more. Starting in April I will be flying a Minimum of 3 hours a day, 3 days a week (more if weather permits) and will get 8 hours overtime a month for staying overshift or flying on my days off.

You did have one thing right. It IS the new normal. Or it soon will be. A year ago we decided to stick our toe in the water to learn how a UAV could benefit our security efforts. It has been a huge success. So much so that we are about to send another officer to the 3 day UAV class I attended last year and we are looking at getting a 2nd UAV with more features and payload such as an Inspire or Matrice model.

I came here to find out if this is something other security departments/agencies/companies are doing and how it is working out for them and to make others aware of what we have been doing with our UAV.

Again, nothing I said was meant to be personal toward you.

What a cool job, I'm jealous. It seems natural to augment security with drones. One alternative would be a multitude of security cameras. I think that in London, there are so many that the majority of the city is covered. As long as they only use it to prevent criminal activity, I think it's a good thing. I think the FAA needs to move with the technology, and relax their ridiculous LOS. Does it have to be "Within VLOS, if you so care to look?" Or are you supposed too keep it in VLOS at all times. Blinking I assume is legal, but how about looking down at your video feed? Is that legal? How about if while you're looking down at the video feed, you go behind a tree? An FAA inspector (They're everywhere!) could see that, and off you'd go to jail.
 
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You're going to be fighting a constant battle to Live Stream without either a HotSpot or some type of LiveU (there are others LiveU is the only one I've used though) system. We utilize Apple products so we can AirPlay to the command post and onto a large format TV.

Can you explain how to use the Apple Air Play for this? My company has been looking for a way to stream video from the drone to a TV in a command post, thanks!
 
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The thing about airplay is that the sender (tablet on drone) has to be in Wi-Fi range of the Apple TV to work. Pretty sure you can’t be in the field for this to work. But maybe the OP has a cooler solution?
 
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I am curious to know, because wouldn't you have to run a hot spot as well if you are in the field?
 

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Can you explain how to use the Apple Air Play for this? My company has been looking for a way to stream video from the drone to a TV in a command post, thanks!

AirPlay is a WiFi streaming capability and both the Tx (Ipad) and Rx (AppleTV or Laptop with the right program) has to be on the same WiFi network.

We use a couple of different scenarios to accompllish this:

A) When we are working with the county IMT we have our COMMS trailer and it has built-in WiFi and AppleTV inside.

B) When no COMMS trailer we have a portable set-up with our own WiFi Router and a windows Laptop running some software that "mimics" an AppleTV. The IC can watch it all from the comfort of his vehicle (we use inverters etc).
 
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AirPlay is a WiFi streaming capability and both the Tx (Ipad) and Rx (AppleTV or Laptop with the right program) has to be on the same WiFi network.

We use a couple of different scenarios to accompllish this:

A) When we are working with the county IMT we have our COMMS trailer and it has built-in WiFi and AppleTV inside.

B) When no COMMS trailer we have a portable set-up with our own WiFi Router and a windows Laptop running some software that "mimics" an AppleTV. The IC can watch it all from the comfort of his vehicle (we use inverters etc).

What is the software that you use on the laptop? Sorry for so many questions but this is great stuff
 

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What is the software that you use on the laptop? Sorry for so many questions but this is great stuff


I knew someone would ask and I should have looked last night LOL!

I'll try to remember to look tonight and see what it is.
 

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Thanks a ton, always learning new stuff :smiley:
 
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Very proactive and pragmatic approach. I wish other security professionals would join the thread. I am sure you were not looking for personal stories and contradictions. The LEO's that I work for cannot be named... but very similar flights are common. And quite effective "eyes in the sky". Cheers and have a great new year.
 

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