Drones can greatly improve the quality and efficiency of humanitarian response through rapid assessment, live field broadcasts, emergency connectivity, and delivery services. By providing technology solutions drones support humanitarians and affected communities while enabling more informed decision making of emergency coordinators.
Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), commonly known as drones fly remotely without an on-board pilot. Their versatility, mobility and relative low cost make this technology increasingly leveraged to support emergency preparedness and response (EPR) operations.
Faster data collection, improved information accuracy, safer monitoring capacity, rapid connectivity, and flexible aid delivery: these are a few of the aspects that make drones an asset in humanitarian contexts.
Humanitarian Drone Coordination
The ETC is adding drones to its Service Catalogue to ensure an integrated and collaborative approach for the use of UAS technology within all humanitarian operations while improving safety and avoiding the duplication of efforts. Drone services including assessment, broadcast, connectivity, and delivery provide the capability to rapidly augment traditional response mechanisms. This suite of tools allows the ETC as a service cluster to further support other clusters by providing more efficient and effective solutions.
Coordination and deployment of UAS services also give humanitarian organizations access to powerful assessment and data analytics relevant to their respective mandates. To ensure drone use in EPR answers the operational needs of the response community, the ETC is working to integrate the use of UAS in three areas:
- Standards and policy-setting: Consolidate and disseminate standards; where necessary, development of standards and policies; identification of “best practices”.
- Building response capacity: coordination, piloting and data analysis training as well as system development at the local, national and regional levels; establishing and maintaining surge capacity and stand-by rosters; establishing and maintaining pre-positioned equipment.
- Developing partnerships for services delivery: facilitate support from the response community through effective and efficient coordination; ensuring partnerships with both operational and strategic partners who have the capacity to contribute to the development of each sector.