Drone provides live feed and damage assessment after Oklahoma tornado

HUNT VALLEY, Md. Textron Systems Unmanned Systems, a business of Textron Inc. announced today that its Civil & Commercial team provided support of disaster response efforts for the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management. The team provided full-motion video in real-time to the Emergency Operations Center in Oklahoma City and the National Weather Service in Norman, Oklahoma. The video was used to safely assess the tornado damage from an EF-2 tornado that took place in Elk City on May 16.

Textron Systems’ own operators, as well as representatives from Aeryon Labs, traveled 120 miles to the impact site and began operations within 20 minutes after the tornado’s impact. On-site, the team - comprised of Textron Systems' operators and representatives from Aeryon Labs - operated an Aeryon SkyRanger small unmanned aerial system (sUAS) to collect more than one hour of high-definition video and georeferenced still imagery over the tornado damage.

The real-time video feed was directly provided to Oklahoma’s regional Emergency Operations Centers via the AeryonLive Video & Telemetry solution that streams live video, images and aircraft telemetry from the SkyRanger sUAS across a secure bonded cellular network connection.It was also broadcast live to the National Weather Service in Norman, Oklahoma.

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