Fairfax County Government Moves to Embrace Drone Tech

Fairfax County is putting together a comprehensive plan for public safety in the county’s use of unmanned aircraft and is looking for public feedback.

The Fairfax County Unmanned Aircraft Systems program is a proposal to incorporate drones into government operations, with a particular focus on public safety. The draft says examples of drone usage includes:

  • Search and rescue
  • Flooding assessments
  • Pre- and post-disaster damage assessments
  • Crash reconstruction
  • Fire incident/scene management and investigations
  • Hazardous materials responses
  • Wildlife estimation

The draft also says the drones would not be used to conduct random surveillance activities or to harass individuals.

Six public meetings are scheduled to discuss the issue with representatives of the Office of Emergency Management, county attorney’s office, police and fire and rescue department. Presentations at each of the meetings are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

  • Jan. 14, 2019 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
    Mason District Governmental Center (Community Room)
    6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale
  • Jan. 16, 2019 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
    South County Governmental Center (Room 221C)
    8350 Richmond Highway, Alexandria
  • Jan. 23, 2019 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
    McLean District Governmental Center
    1437 Balls Hill Road, McLean
  • Jan. 24, 2019 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
    Sully District Governmental Center
    4900 Stonecroft Blvd, Chantilly
  • Jan. 28, 2019 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
    Reston Community Center – Hunter Woods
    2310 Colts Neck Road, Reston
  • Jan. 30, 2019 (6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.)
    Braddock Hall – Kings Park Library
    9002 Burke Lake Road, Burke

Public comments can also be submitted to [email protected] before close-of-business on Feb. 8 to be included in the written record.

Photo via Flickr/Joe Loong

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