12 Jul, 2021 @ 16:31
1 min read

Eye in the sky: Spain launches new fleet of traffic drones to patrol roads this summer

Traffic Drones

THE General-Directorate for Traffic (DGT) now has a fleet of 39 drones for traffic monitoring across Spain.

They finished distributing the drones to all parts of Spain on July 7, apart from Catalunya and the Basque Country, who have their own independent traffic monitoring systems. 

The drones will work in a two kilometre radius around their Guardia Civil hub at a maximum height of 120 metres, though some of the models of drones have a range of up to 10 kilometres. The drones are capable of flying for 40 minutes at up to 80km/h (50mph) before needing a battery change. 

These traffic drones are designed to be used during the summer, and can withstand up to 45 degree heat. But, they can only be used in certain conditions, for instance they cannot fly in the rain or during high winds, making their use very situational. 

A Phantom 4 Drone / menorca.info

The DGT have carried out studies that show the effectiveness of the drones. The results show that the drones are especially useful for picking up phone use at the wheel, people not wearing their seatbelts, babies not being put in car chairs, and for spotting cars overtaking cyclists dangerously. 

The DGT also found out that the drones are useful in helping at large events that need traffic guidance.

Screenshot 2021 07 12 At 15.59.11
Drone distribution / elmundo.es

To begin with, the drones will be part of the same team that uses the 12 traffic helicopters around Spain. In fact, the pilots and cameramen are going to be trained by the same Guardia Civil division: the Guardia Civil Traffic Group (ATGC).

So far, since testing began in 2018, the DGT have logged 500 flying hours, have tracked 55,000 cars, and have detected over 600 traffic infractions.


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