SPD will show off drone at Garfield Community Center

When the mayor held a town hall meeting at Kawabe House earlier this month, one resident voiced concern about the police department’s new drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles. Mayor McGinn said he sees the drones, which can only sustain a few minutes of flight at a time, as “a low-cost alternative to having a helicopter” at a scene.

While SPD wants to sell the drone, a Draganflyer X6, as a glorified RC helicopter with a camera attached that could be useful to get overhead shots during incidents, others see the beginnings of a dystopian surveillance society with few rights to privacy.

You can check out the drones for yourself tonight (Thursday) at Garfield Community Center. SPD will display one of the units and hold a Q&A about them starting at 6 p.m.

From SPD:

The Seattle Police Department is one of 50 organizations that have received permission from the federal government to operate unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) – also known as ”drones”.

What – UAV Question & Answer

When – October 25, 2012

Time – 6:00 p.m.

Location- The Garfield Community Center, 2323 East Cherry Street, Seattle, WA 98122

Seattle Police Arson/Bomb Squad Lieutenant Greg Sackman will be on hand with the UAV to answer your questions and receive your feedback about our proposed policy. 

A draft copy of the Department’s operational protocol is attached below:

UAS Operations Manual

5 thoughts on “SPD will show off drone at Garfield Community Center

  1. What? I was sure there would be 500 comments from our Anarchist brethren. Is there a keg tonight or something? Where is the moral outrage for this Big Brother approach? Is anyone at the meeting tweeting the info?

  2. It is a simple tool to spy on criminals. Let’s put it to use ASAP.

    I would like to have a little spider drone equiped with tiny shears and sponges. The purpose would be to constantly and secretly roam around on the body cleaning and manicuring. Someday you will wake up clean and groomed. At bed time your teeth will already be brushed and your toe nailes scrubbed. Annoying tangled up pubes will be trimmed just so.

    Let’s support the advance of drones. Especially butler spider drones..