The focus is on deterring dangerous drivers and the drones will be used to support the gathering of intelligence and evidence.
The Metropolitan Police in London will become the first UK police force to use a drone to monitor road users.
According to a report in The Guardian newspaper, the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) will focus on road users engaged in dangerous driving, such as racing, that could potentially put others at risk, rather than targeting all speeding motorists.
Each year more than 2,000 people are killed or seriously injured on London’s streets.
The initiative forms part of Vision Zero week of action to reduce deaths and injury on London’s roads, and the drone will be used to support gathering of intelligence and evidence.
“This is one of many enforcement tactics being used. Its aim is to deter dangerous driving and we hope the message of ‘drive lawfully, stay safe and keep a clean licence’ is widely understood,” said detective superintendent Andy Cox, the head of the Met’s roads and traffic policing unit.
“However, deterrence is sometimes best achieved through intense enforcement and that’s what this capability enables.”
“The focus will be on dangerous drivers who are racing and those putting their lives and other people’s at risk”
The Guardian reports that once a suspect has been spotted, information will be relayed from the drone to officers further along the road so they can pull them over. The drone has a night vision function and will be able to operate at both high and low altitudes.
“The focus will be on dangerous drivers who are racing and those putting their lives and other people’s at risk,” added Cox.
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan’s, Vision Zero initiative seeks to eliminate all deaths and serious injuries from the capital’s road network. By 2022, the aim is to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on London’s roads by 65 per cent with no-one being killed on or by a bus by 2030, on the road to Vision Zero in 2041.
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