Drone Hunting Eagles being considered by the Metropolitan Police
The threat from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s) otherwise known as drones, is very real and we are all aware of their use by the military, but it could be the simpler quadcopter than can now be bought on the high street that is causing police forces and anti-terrorist units concern.
Quadcopters have been demonstrated lifting and carrying heavy loads and the fear is that they could be used to carry explosives and target buildings or high profile politicians or events. The problem of drones being flown close to buildings is increasing and for this reason the Commissioner for the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, is considering using and unusual method to combat these.
The Dutch National Police Force have released a video which demonstrated that by using eagles, the drone could be safely dragged away from its intended target. The video clearly showed the eagle taking off and whilst it was in mid-air, grabbing hold of the drone and bring it down to the ground. If the drone was carrying explosives, it would be taken away from the intended target and made safe or destroyed.
The fear that use of drones by terror groups could increase has been at the forefront of police and combatting the threat has been the subject of a recent report, hosted by the Oxford Research Group and produced by the Remote Control project. In this they say that the UK was at risk from terrorist attacks using drones.
Police have been advised not to attempt to land the remote device themselves and documents which have been obtained by science and engineering magazine Wired, reported that: “Trying to land the system yourself may cause the drone to crash leading to a very real risk of injury to persons and damage to property (in addition to destroying the drone).”
The Metropolitan Police are naturally taking an interest in the Dutch project and as always they always take a close look at all innovative new ideas like the use of eagles.