Idaho Falls police officer tapped to help state create drone safety council

An Idaho Falls Police Department officer has been selected to help create a statewide roster of agencies using drones.

The move is meant to both facilitate interdepartmental use of the technology, as well as shepherd and inform departments new to unmanned aerial vehicles about the rules and accepted use-cases.

Police officer David Barker has been assigned to establish the Idaho Public Safety UAS Council, with the aim of creating a statewide directory of law enforcement entities operating drones. Idaho’s program is one step toward creating a thorough, nationwide directory on which the National Council on Public Safety UAS has been working.

According to a Bard College study, there’s been an 82 percent increase in domestic public safety offices using drones in the past year alone. Officials say because of that, establishing transparency and a clear, informative directory of each agency involved is not only logical, but important for the integrity of governmental drone use moving forward.

There are currently 12 public safety departments with drone programs in Idaho that have registered with the Federal Aviation Administration, including the Idaho Falls Police Department employing Barker.

Barker also wants to shepherd those who have yet to dip their toes into the UAV pool, to increase the number of agencies in the state capable of utilizing drone technology to save lives. However, some of those departments have employees that have been using drones without being authorized by the FAA to do so. (Post Register)

Tags: ,