Drone comes to the rescue of two swimmers in Australia

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A drone turned out to the savoir for two Aussie swimmers

A drone turned out to the savior for two Aussie teens on 18th of January, 2018. This episode happened when Gabe Vidler and Monty Greeslade were body-surfing at Lenox Beach, Ballina when they were hit by strong currents and waves as high as ten feet. It was sheer fortune that the lifeguards picked the same day to get acquainted with life-saving drones. Drones have been in use for quite some time now for multiple purposes, but this incident is reportedly the first of its kind. Evidently, lifeguards were testing the pilot venture on using drones to pull swimmers to wellbeing as well as getting the staff familiarized with the drone named “Little Ripper”, which is a part of the government’s plan to help alleviate the danger of shark assaults. What’s more, this test run actually turned into a real rescue when the lifeguard who was operating the drone was informed about the two young men who were swimming outside the safety flags and were stuck in an unfortunate situation with high tides.  Reacting to the crisis, lifeguards launched the drone, located the swimmers and steered it to the location within a minute or two. Once there, the drone dropped a ‘rescue pod’ into the water, where it expanded so the swimmers could grab it and be pulled to the shore.

The drone’s pilot, Jai Sheridan played a vital role in the successful rescuing of the two teenagers

The rescue was completed in just seventy seconds which is way lesser than a lifeguard trying to assist. The drone’s pilot, Jai Sheridan, is a decorated veteran lifeguard supervisor from New South Wales and played a vital role in the successful rescuing of the two teenagers. The drone, “Little Ripper” is an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) is originally part of the algorithm based shark-spotting program rolled out across Australian beaches as almost 24 million Aussies live on the coasts and death by shark attack or drowning is a major pain for the government. As far as Little Ripper” goes, the government should be happy that their multi-million dollar program has definitely paid off. The teenagers, Gabe and Monty – both seventeen, can be seen grabbing on to the inflatable rescue pod and making their way to the shore on the video released by Reuters.

Australian authorities are beaming with pride as their million-dollar investment for safer beaches seems to have taken the right launch

With the happy ending of this, it would be correct to say that in cases where conditions may be hazardous and time is a factor, drones would be able to help officials assess the gravity of the situation and accordingly deploy rescue initiatives without endangering lives. It can be rightly said that there has never been any reported instance where a drone, fitted with a floatation device, has been used to rescue swimmers. Australian authorities are beaming with pride as their million-dollar investment for safer beaches seems to have taken the right launch. We can definitely expect more enhancements and features in the upcoming days as the software behind it can be really helpful for divers and lifeguards alike. Drones as these are the future of mankind. We aren’t sure when they would turn against humans (as shown in sci-fi movies) but until then we can say that drones can be our allies.

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