Escambia Search And Rescue Trains With New Drones

February 12, 2017

Escambia Search and Rescue volunteers spent much of their Saturday learning how to property operate two new state of the art drones.

The Maxsur Seeker drones are a designed for search and rescue operations, including a dual thermal and color camera. They have about a mile flight range, with the operator able to watch live flight video on a monitor.

Saturday morning, ESAR volunteers were in the classroom learning how to fly the drones, and Saturday afternoon they were out at Lake Stone in Century for hands-on flight time.

The drones were purchased by ESAR as part of a “Sea, Air and Land Capabilities Improvement Initiative” grant funded for $108,200 by local women’s philanthropy group Impact 100 last October.

The complete package included the drones, a Boston Whaler capable of operation in the Gulf, 12 Project Lifesaver systems  and more.

Photos for, click to enlarge.


7 Responses to “Escambia Search And Rescue Trains With New Drones”

  1. mike on February 16th, 2017 7:41 pm


    Okay, thanks for the info, I had no idea. I probably read online about some other depts having them, not sure.

  2. Tony D. Atlas on February 15th, 2017 4:57 am

    Reply to Anne:

    1. The system that is used for Alzheimer’s and Autism is NOT a GPS based system, it’s basic radio directional frequency and no, this drone isn’t equipped for that yet…

    2. No the GPS system used for prisoners are run by an outside third party monitoring service which is monitored by Probation/Parole and the Court System. ESAR is a volunteer system of civilians not designed by nature to track criminals.

    Reply to Mike:

    1. Florida Law Enforcement are PROHIBITED from using drones for ANY Law Enforcement function at the current time because laws were enacted immediately a few years ago. The conservatives didn’t want law enforcement “spying on people in public places” and using a drone in the same sense as a helicopter but obviously all other private entities can use them for a variety of needs. (How does someone spy on someone in a public place is beyond me)?. The law enforcement in Escambia lost all of the air searching technology some years ago due to the expense of running aircraft. Until Florida grants exceptions to law enforcement, it’s the old school way of doing business. Could law enforcement drones equipped with basic thermal technology been an asset during this latest killing spree? Maybe but until the laws are changed, we will never know.

    Ideally, congratulations to ESAR for staying ahead of the technology curve and they are a very valuable asset to our community. Keep up the great work.

  3. Jim Walters on February 12th, 2017 11:09 am


  4. mike on February 12th, 2017 10:09 am

    I wonder if professional security companies have this up & running, at least with nightvision GoPro attached, to look over the rich folk & their estates. I guess they can be set up to feed a local computer. Nothing compared to what ECSD probably has. :)

  5. Xpeecee on February 12th, 2017 9:43 am

    Great idea! An inexpensive way to use the latest technology in rescue operations… :)

  6. Anne on February 12th, 2017 9:01 am

    Knowing little about drones am asking:
    Do these drones have a capability to scan, detect and identify the GPS type devices for people with medical issues and alzheimers or other types of dementia?

    Do the drones have the ability to track and locate prisoners or those who are wearing court ordered ankle monitors?

    Drones sound like a great program since we no longer have specialized helicopters in the LEO fleets.

  7. Jan on February 12th, 2017 6:44 am

    Congratulations! This is an amazing group of people with tremendous dedication to helping our community.

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