Gov. Ricketts Highlights Nebraska State Patrol’s Innovative Drone Program

Photo: Governor Pete Ricketts' Office

(Lincoln, NE) -- Governor Pete Ricketts highlight's the Nebraska State Patrol’s innovative drone program.

“The Nebraska State Patrol has continuously innovated through the years, finding new and improved ways to protect the public,” said Gov. Ricketts. “The agency’s drone program is a great example. Whether helping to investigate vehicle crashes or fight wildfires, the drones have proven to be major assets. I commend the State Patrol for its creative use of technology to better serve Nebraskans.”

NSP’s drone program launched a year ago. In its first year, drone operators have investigated 98 crashes. Using the drones has reduced the average time of road closure for a crash investigation from 2.5 hours to less than an hour. Completing the investigations more quickly limits the time motorists must detour around a crash scene. Governor Ricketts' office says it also enhances public safety by decreasing the likelihood of a secondary crash.

In addition to crash investigation, NSP has deployed its drones to assist with wildfire response. Aerial drones are able to pinpoint the hottest areas of a fire using thermal imaging. This data helps emergency managers effectively dispatch fire teams to douse the flames.

“Our drone program and the troopers who serve as pilots have been tremendous assets over the past year,” said Colonel John Bolduc, Superintendent of the Nebraska State Patrol. “This innovation is another example of how troopers and professional staff are constantly looking for new ways to serve the public. As we grow the program by training more troopers as drone pilots, we’re excited to see the heights it can reach as part of our continued mission to keep Nebraska safe.”

Photo: Nebraska State Patrol

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