Drones to Patrol Olympics

RAF snipers may also be watching from helicopters
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Nov 25, 2011 1:23 AM CST
The Olympic Stadium: will drones, not blimps, soon be flying over?   (AP Photo/Anthony Charlton, HO, File)

(Newser) – Next stop for drones: London. To help bolster security at next year's Olympics, Scotland Yard plans to use unmanned drones equipped with cameras for "eyes in the sky," reports the Independent. Only one local police force currently uses a drone—a radio-controlled mini-helicopter—for surveillance, but three other forces have used them, including one that was lost after it crashed into a local river. An Air Force base in Essex also has three which could be mobilized for the games.

Any police force that plans to use a drone in a populated area will have to obtain permission from the Civil Aviation Authority. The US has expressed concerns about the lack of adequate security preparations at the London games, and the British defense secretary said last week that surface-to-air missiles could be deployed in the event of a terrorist threat. It's also been reported that RAF snipers will be watching the action from helicopters.

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