Ever-rising use of drones underpins new feature at the 2016 Emergency Services Show

There will be a real buzz in the air at this year’s Emergency Services Show thanks to a new feature dedicated to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (otherwise known as UAVs or drones). Broden Media (organiser of the event, which takes place at the NEC in Birmingham from 21-22 September) has now partnered with SUAS Global, the UAV professionals’ network, to launch The Drone Zone.

As well as showcasing dedicated suppliers of UAV technology, The Drone Zone will bring together industry specialists and end users who’ll share their knowledge and experiences. Risk management, operational safety in both civil and commercial airspace, privacy, security and legislation will all be covered in the free-to-attend seminar programme.

A recent Sky News report found that two-thirds of Fire and Rescue Services and 50% of police forces in the UK are now using – or are otherwise planning to use – drones. Specialist ambulance crews, or Hazardous Area Response Teams, are also expected to be equipped with UAVs this year.

Among the speakers in The Drone Zone’s Seminar Theatre will be James Grove (watch manager for the West Midlands Fire Service, which itself has been using drones since 2007). The Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service (which enjoys joint use of a drone with Lancashire Police) will also share its experiences of drones to date.

Potential around situational awareness

Meanwhile, the potential of UAVs for aiding situational awareness during fire incidents, missing person searches and flooding episodes will be covered by Séamus Kearns, head of operations at Surrey Search & Rescue. In addition, Lee Renwick (director of the HAIS Group) is set to discuss the application of UAVs in law enforcement and counter-terrorism scenarios.

The Department for Transport and NATS (the UK’s leading provider of air traffic control services) will also be presenting sessions.

Other speakers at the 2016 Emergency Services Show include:

*Steve Coulson (director at Martek Marine) who will explore how drones are going to change the Emergency Services teams of the future, and also ask whether drones will come to be seen as an enhancement or a threat to the jobs of already stretched teams

*John Tansley (managing director of NoFlyZone) who’ll be covering privacy and security issues surrounding the legal and illegal use of UAVs, as well as examining public perceptions

*Ricky Huntley (regional RPAS advisor for SGS Hart Aviation) who will highlight the importance of corporate responsibility and due diligence, and also demonstrate how human factors considerations are centric to successful drone deployment

*John Hanslip (from Marsh) who’ll advise delegates on risk transfer and insurance cover

Within the exhibition, drone supplier Coptrz will be on hand to offer Emergency Services and practising security/risk management specialists salient advice on how to choose the right drone and what kind of training is required.

Other suppliers of UAV technology exhibiting at the Emergency Services Show include Aeraccess, Excelerate, Primetech and WH Bence.

Staff from SUAS Global – the ‘voice’ of the UAV industry which promotes a common standard of excellence across the sector – will be available to chat with visitors about UAVs and their specific uses.

*Visitor entry, attendance at the Seminar Theatres and parking at the Emergency Services Show are all free. To register for free entry to the event visit: www.emergencyuk.com

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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