Cape Town set to fight crime with drone technology

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JP Smith, Mayoral committee member for safety and security stated if the city received the go-ahead from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), that could make Cape Town the first city in the country to use this technology to combat crime.

The City is planning to incorporate drone into the crime-fighting regime

“To our knowledge, there are no other municipalities in the country that are using drones or investigating the use of drones. Cape Town would be one of the first municipalities to undertake such an initiative.”

Mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith

It might not happen tomorrow but soon it will

According to the Weekend Argus, CAA spokesperson Kabelo Ledwaba stated that the use of drones, “includes various types of commercial and non-commercial activities such as security and crowd control, anti-poaching operations or conservation assignments, aerial surveillance, scientific research, journalism, monitoring services, filming and deliveries.”

“It is for these reasons that there are rules governing the use of remotely piloted aircraft systems. It is thus important that individuals operating remotely piloted aircraft do so in line with regulatory guidelines.

Applying these simple but critical airmanship principles will ensure that they do not compromise the safety of citizens, other aircraft or property. Failure to adhere to civil aviation regulations could result in a 10-year prison sentence or a fine of R50 000.”

CAA spokesperson Kabelo Ledwaba

The city will have eyes above

This kind of surveillance will allow the City to keep an eye, literally, on a number of areas across Cape Town in the same time span. This also enables the City to stay on top of things especially with the crime that is on the outskirts or remote areas. Smith confirmed that the City has spent more than R500 000 on drones so far, which will soon be used in pre and post operations around the city.

Drone to fight crime in Cape Town remote areas./ Image:
Drone to fight crime in Cape Town remote areas./ Image:

“Drones will be deployed as seen fit by the safety directorate within the legal parameters stipulated. The City of Cape Town staff will be tested by the CAA, which will be the final phase for staff to get their pilot’s licences. The horticultural area in Philippi, where many incidents of cable theft have been reported, has been earmarked for monitoring.”

Mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith

The technology will be used to combat crimes of different magnitudes; from poaching to theft and even the city’s research. The drones will enable mobile monitoring and will be piloted remotely by trained individuals. Protection Status

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