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NYPD Adds Drones to Its Force


Drones in New York

First reported by


  • The New York Police Department just added 14 drones to assist the force.
  • The drones will be used in a variety of situations by licensed NYPD officers. They will aid the Technical Assistance Response Unit with crowd and traffic monitoring, as well as search and rescue operations.
  • With approval, the drones may also be used for other emergency circumstances, like hostage situations or a HAZMAT incident.
  • The Chief of Department said, “Drone technology will give our cops and their incident commanders an opportunity to see what they are getting into before they go into harm’s way.”


  • Don’t worry, the drones won’t be issuing any speeding tickets. Will more departments follow suit if drone technology can help protect more officers and civilians?


Privacy advocates balk in the new drone fleet of NYPD

Police officials in New York City said on Tuesday that they will deploy drones to help rescue missions, traffic accident investigations and large-scale events, a move that raises concerns about privacy among civil liberty advocates.

Members of the New York Police Department’s Technical Assistance Response Unit, or TARU, will use 14 drones, which will cost the department $480,000 in 2019, according to an NYPD spokeswoman. A member of the unit will operate a drone remotely to make three-dimensional projections of traffic accidents, search for evidence and collect details in spills involving hazardous material. Chief of Department Terence Monahan said it is the first time the NYPD will be deploying the drones in public.

The devices with thermal sensors to detect the heat energy of a person are also used to monitor large events and hostage situations in accordance with a copy of the technology policy of the NYPD obtained by the Wall Street Journal.

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The NYPD is restricted from using the drones to perform routine patrol, surveillance without a warrant or traffic enforcement. However, the policy leaves the door open for the NYPD to use the technology in other incidents related to “public safety, emergency, or other situations with the approval of the Chief of Department.” The devices aren’t equipped with any weapons, a spokeswoman said.

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NYPD unveils new drone program


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