Drones are now becoming essential tools in the fight against the new Coronavirus outbreak in China. People are using drones to carry out tasks like spraying disinfectant over villages, dispersing public gatherings and facilitating construction.
Drones could dramatically improve how China attempts to kill the virus in public areas. They can cover far more ground than traditional methods, while reducing risk to workers who would otherwise spend more time potentially exposed to both the virus and the disinfectant.
Monitoring Public Gatherings and Keep Public Informed
Local governments are mounting speakers on small drones to disperse public gatherings. They have also been used to warn people regarding quarantine curfews or if they are seen out in public without wearing a mask. Drones have also flew banners to educate people on how to take the necessary precautions.
Thermal cameras on drones were also used to monitor body temperatures so medical staff can identify new potential cases. In Shanghai, drones have been deployed on city roads for monitoring while officials check travellers’ temperatures.
To contain the spread of the virus, drones are also used to monitor activities such as traffic and waste disposal. In Zhongshan, drones are used to oversee the disposal of medical waste coming out of hospitals.
People across China are mounting disinfectant tools on their crop-spraying drones. Drones are being used in Chinese villages also to spray disinfectant throughout their villages to help fight the spread of the virus.
Lighting drones were used in Wuhan when two large temporary hospitals had to be built in a matter of days as the city ran out of beds in the hospitals. Without the street lamps and construction lights at the site, six large lighting drones hovered above the ground so that the construction workers could work 24 hours a day to get it completed in record time.
Another use for drones is Drone delivery. The outbreak has kept millions of families in their homes to avoid contact with others. Contactless delivery would be a huge help to these households that have been quarantined. Organisations can send food, supplies and medicine to anyone in need. At the same time, avoiding face-to-face contact will cut the risk of infection.
This crisis has created an opportunity to discover new ways of using drones to curb the spread of Covid-19 not only in China but globally.