News

Firefighters add drones to their arsenal

FIREFIGHTERS have a new weapon in their battle against bushfires with drones now allowing them to scope out areas too dangerous for humans to access.

Fire and Rescue NSW has added two drones to its arsenal along with two custom-built mobile command centres and more than 180 mobile data terminals in fire trucks across the state.

The mobile data terminals will give firefighters in remote areas internet access to live weather information, maps of hydrants, electricity and drainage infrastructure and other useful tools.

Emergency Services Minister David Elliott received a first-hand demonstration of the new technologies at a display in Sydney on Monday.

"Firefighters are forced to make life and death decisions, under extreme pressure, and often with very little information," he said.

The drones will also be used to quickly and safely assess chemical spills and natural disasters.

FRNSW Commissioner Greg Mullins said the custom-designed mobile command centres were equipped with radio, live video feeds, high-speed internet and mobile phone communications, a weather station and outdoor wide-screen televisions.

"Each vehicle has high speed internet and a 100m wi-fi bubble which could be invaluable to communities cut off from technology following a catastrophic fire or storm event," he said.

"This new technology improves the information available for first responders and will ensure that we remain a world-class fire, rescue and hazmat service."

The announcement followed the launch of shark-spotting drone trials on New South Wales beaches last month.

The Westpac-sponsored trials will begin in Byron Bay, Hawks Nest and Newcastle before being rolled out elsewhere in the state. -APN NEWSDESK

Topics:  drones, firefighers



Visitors advised not to enter state forest

Fires Near Me show fire in Barcoongere State Forrest.

Local RFS has been battling a fire since 10am

Maree forced to calls it quits after 34 years

TIME CALLED: A diagnosis of multiple sclerosis has finally caught up with Maree McKenna who has worked at the South Grafton Ex-Servicemen's Club for 34 years. Her last day on the job is Friday.

A career through fire, flood and a 20-year battle with MS

Memorial board race not held for first time since 2009 tragedy

ON HIATUS: Competitors in last year's Jacob Lollback Memorial Board Race stand for a minute's silence before they hit the surf.

"It was a good time to call time and go out on a good note"

Local Partners

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E4: Step In The Arena review

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Rob Kardashian admits his first crush was his sister Kim

Rob Kardashian once had a crush on his sister Kim Kardashian West.

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E3: Who's Gonna Take The Weight

Mahershala Ali in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E2: Code of the Streets review

Simone Missick and Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Kim Kardashian West 'sick of talking about Taylor Swift'

Kim Kardashian West is sick of talking about Taylor Swift.

Justin Bieber ordered to attend Miami deposition

Justin Bieber has been ordered to travel to Miami for a deposition

Beach-side real estate starts at $85k on Fraser Coast

HERVEY BAY REAL ESTATE: You can buy this townhouse in Scarness for under $300k.

Live your beach-living dream locally.

Clarence Valley property prices go through the roof

Buyers are hungry to sink their teeth into the Clarence Valley

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

NEW HOME: Agents to the rescue for family of nine

RELIEF: Tanya Cone (middle) with her kids and McKimm's Real Estate property managers Regan Firth and Nadine Greenhalgh who helped find her family a home.

DEX article prompts property managers to help family find new home