We wanted to let you know about a potential addition to our department.
As you may know, Shoreline Amphitheatre will once again host Audiotistic, a two-day music festival, on July 14 and 15. Like last year, we will be working with Live Nation Team members and amphitheatre staff to ensure all concert goers remain safe.
We have been looking into the success of drone programs of other police agencies throughout the Bay Area and the state, specifically for assistance during missing person investigations, crime scene surveying and large-scale events, both planned and in crisis situations. We have been looking at the pros and cons of these drone programs, and are particularly interested in their use for situational awareness, rescue efforts, locating and tracking criminal activity and more.
To that end, we wanted to let you know we will be testing drones that will be flown by members of the security drone company, Aptonomy. They have graciously volunteered their time and their equipment to allow us to evaluate the benefits of a potential drone program for our department.
The drones, which will be flown in short increments of time throughout the first of the two-day festival, will never fly over the crowd. The drones will also never fly over residential areas or neighboring businesses. Instead, they will fly over areas where footage can provide real time traffic flow information, so that if need be, we can quickly deploy officers to areas to help mitigate traffic. They will also circle the perimeter of the venue (again, never over areas where there will be crowds) as well as the parking lots to look for, and alert us to, criminal activity, such as auto burglaries, fights, and other incidents that require our response.
The drones will be operated solely by Aptonomy personnel, in compliance with all FAA rules and regulations, with department personnel observing how the drones work and how they can assist us in ensuring the concert venue remain as safe as possible.
Our hope is that, should the drones prove to be an effective way to help us more quickly respond to public safety calls, traffic problems and medical issues, we may be able to move forward with creating a program here at MVPD that will serve the community in the same capacity. Our goal, as always, is continue to provide the community with the highest level of service possible.
We welcome any questions you may have. We’d be happy to answer them!