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Coverage of ways unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are changing how state and local government collects data on physical infrastructure, maps jurisdictions via GIS and monitors public safety from the sky. Also includes stories about efforts by private-sector companies and education institutions to improve how drones can better help government deliver services.

Although the exact date has yet to be finalized, the Silicon Valley drone technology company Matternet will launch its pilot program in its Northern California home city later this year.
Amid a shortage of human lifeguards, drones equipped with flotation devices will be helping New York City lifeguards rescue swimmers in distress this summer season, city officials said Saturday.
Recreational drone flights are, generally, legal in the Pacific Northwest city. However, hobbyists looking to fly in city parks must secure permission from the city parks director. Much the same is true in Pierce County, which includes Tacoma.
The technology is intended to do a better job of scrutinizing lines — and to save money. It is believed to be the first such use of the combination in the state of Michigan, the Macomb County Public Works commissioner said.
In coming months, drones will supplant police emergency response in the Central Park precinct, in three precincts in Brooklyn and one in the Bronx. It’s not yet clear the types of calls on which the drones will be used.
The bill would have also created a study of current Internet neutrality with the goal of providing consistent consumer rates and mandatory fee disclosures, including total prices.
NOAA needs aerial mapping at a level of detail that it can’t get today, but a drone partnership with Verizon Frontline will give them the data they need in hours instead of days to forecast and monitor storms.
Dedrone, the company Axon acquired, makes software, sensors and AI that help Ukraine defend against enemy drones — and protect utilities, prisons and public spaces in the U.S. Dedrone had raised $127 million from Axon and other investors.
The Merrillville Police Department's adoption of drones has proved effective in their efforts to fight crime, according to a press release Monday from the town of Merrillville.
Generally, only three types of locations are statewide no-fly zones for the aerial devices. And, while the Show Me State has laws on recording people without their consent in private spaces, they don’t cover many drone uses.