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Fotografía de Karl Greif, bajo la licencia de Unsplash

Webinar Abstract 14.12: Traffic over our heads

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On Thursday, December 14, the DCNA, in collaboration with the COLLARIS project (also funded by DG ECHO), organised a webinar on the simultaneous flight of several unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in a disaster situation (e.g. floods). The speakers were Jakub Ryzenko, and Emil Wrzosek.

Meteorological & HydrologicalTechnologicalWildfires
By project COVALEX staff


The COLLARIS Network focuses on developing operational procedures and best practices regarding air traffic management challenges, solutions and operational practices. They also seek solutions for data analysis and exchange in auxiliary support systems (e.g. . sensors such as visual cameras, infrared cameras, delivery platforms, ...).

Finally, they are looking for methods to increase personnel competencies (focused on the efficiency of UAV use, beyond pilot training).

This webinar covered six main points. In the first part the speakers explained how their points of interest came to be. The realisation of the systemic GAP (deficiency or sub-optimality), its scope, initial formulation and identification of stakeholders was set out for the audience. To better illustrate the challenge, the speakers focused on a case study and explained the Biebrza 2020 forest fire.

  Due to safety regulations, the full potential of the use of UAVs could not be adopted and UAVs were only allowed to fly during dusk and dawn, hence approximately 30 minutes per day because of manned aircrafts being deployed during the forest fire event as well. This was seen as ineffective and inefficient and therefore, the gap in the potential simultaneous deployment of manned and unmanned aircrafts was detected.

In the second part of the webinar, the role of the “innovation vendor” was discussed, to briefly describe how to bring innovations into organisations that do not have adequate structures to find and adopt them by themselves. The crux of the webinar was the problem definition, hence: the situation in which the deficiency manifests itself and describing the system itself and its shareholders. Subsequently, the theme of the webinar focused on explaining the development of the solution and its implementation progress.

2. Still from drone RGB footage captured by State Fire Service UAV during Biebrza (PL) 2020 wildfire. Image documents the extent of the fire. Author: st. kpt. Stefan Ostrowski, KW PSP w Białymstoku.

3. Still from drone footage captured by State Fire Service UAV during Biebrza (PL) 2020 wildfire. The video shows a helicopter taking water into a so-called 'heli-bucket'. Author: st. kpt. Stefan Ostrowski, KW PSP w Białymstoku.

4. Setup for exercises HCP 2023, in Stalowa Wola, Poland, in which ATM and utilisation played a major role. Author: asp. sztab. Tomasz Flak, KP PSP w Przeworsku.

5. Exercises HCP 2023, in Stalowa Wola, Poland – levee reinforcing after simulated seepage was detected by the FlyEye drone's infrared sensor. Author: asp. sztab. Tomasz Flak, KP PSP w Przeworsku.

6. Exercises Las2021 in Borsk, Poland. Incident commander, by using a fixed-wing drone, helps his team to find a landing spot and localise the fire during a mission to extinguish a fire on an island. Author: CIK CBK PAN.

After the presentation of the solution, which consists of including trained air traffic management personnel in a crisis operation and an online platform to streamline manned and unmanned air traffic, the focus of the webinar shifted to the trialling of the solution in crisis management exercises together with the Polish State Fire Services. In that context, the two trials were presented with a wild fire exercise in 2021 as well as a high capacity pumping exercise in 2023

The dissemination of the results, their implementation and the roadmap for the Polish State Fire Services, made up the final point of the webinar. After the presentation, there was time for questions and discussion where attendees congratulated the speakers for their work and requested not only more information but also the presentation. 


About the author

Project COVALEX staff

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