MAYVILLE, NY (WNY News Now) — Local law enforcement will have a new tool available to them, as the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office is prepared to start using drones this year.
Preparations began last fall, when an anonymous member of the public donated the funding, totaling around 50 thousand dollars, to purchase the equipment.
Since then, the department has been training several of its members to operate the drones, and getting them certified with the FAA.
In cooperation with other agencies, the sheriff’s office hopes the technology will give search and rescue teams added capabilities when looking for lost individuals, which is especially important in the difficult terrain of the southern tier.
“Efficiency’s a big thing. Covering a large area in a short amount of time can be achieved with the drone that wouldn’t be feasible with just boots on the ground,” explained drone unit team leader Sergeant Adam Mcadoo. “It’d take a lot of resources to cover a large area, to match the amount of area a drone could cover.”
Officials stress that no taxpayer money was used to set up this program. The department hopes to begin rolling out the program in the coming months.