James Randerson, science correspondent
Tuesday August 21, 2007
Police used a remote-controlled spy drone to watch crowds at the V festival at the weekend, the first time the technology has been used at a major public event.
The 70cm-wide flying surveillance device, fitted with high-resolution still and colour video cameras as well as infrared night vision capability, was used to keep tabs on people thought to be acting suspiciously in car parks and to gather intelligence on individuals in the crowd.
Staffordshire police said the drone’s images did not lead directly to any arrests, but one reason for using it had been to deter would-be thieves. It was not flown over the main arena because of fears that a crash might cause injuries.
The battery-operated drone’s four carbon-fibre rotors are so quiet they cannot be heard from the ground once it is higher than 50 metres, and at 100 metres up it cannot be seen with the naked eye. It can fly 500 metres high, but the Civil Aviation Authority has set an operating limit of 120 metres. The vehicle, which takes off vertically, can be flown even when out of sight, because it beams images back to video goggles worn by the operator.
The idiot who wrote this failed to ask this crucial question:
How can a drone that a criminal doesnt know is watching, deter that crimninal? The very fact that it is silent means that it cannot frighten off or deter anyone.
The rationale (false reasoning) used to justify CCTV is that it acts as a deterrent because criminals can see the cameras.
Is there not a single person at the Guardian with a working brain cell, that has the guts to rubbish this garbage?
…and this is from a SCIENCE writer.