The recent Colorado floods are giving us a great look at how useful UAVs will be in disaster recovery and photography in the future.
While FEMA may have grounded Falcon UAV's aerial survey mission of the flooding around Boulder and Lyons, causing quite a buzz in the media, that hasn't prevented other local drone pilots and hobbyist FPVers from capturing some amazing aerial footage of the disaster. ABC News ran a report yesterday showing footage from a multicopter flying over
swollen rivers and flooded streets in one town affected by the flooding.
Meanwhile, local hobbyist FPVers have managed to capture some stunning footage of the flooding on the eastern plains in Weld County. The following videos and the video at the top of this post were filmed on Friday, September 13 during the height of the flooding, and are courtesy of YouTube user Neutography.
These videos were captured with a small FPV Slowstick fixed-wing RC plane. The flights to capture the footage were described in this post on RCGroups:
For Our side of the story: we flew on friday the 13th at I-25 / SH66 / 119/ and county road 20 1/2, me i was way nervous perty much the whole time because there was ALOT of air traffic even though more than half were news copters and Sightseer's ( not sayin there's anything wrong with that).
Kept it low and always had spotters as well as a good ears listening/watching out.
The main reason for my video's is that i wanted to see what everything looked like from the air, not selling or promoting sales, I'm sure one of these days FPV copters/planes will come in to there own for search/rescue/damage assesment type operations, kinda dread it at the same time because the "Regulations" usually fallow such things.
Since I live in southeast Denver, I've considered capturing some aerial video of the floods myself, but haven't so far mainly because of lack of time and worry about interfering with rescue aircraft. Still, I'm glad some other local FPVers were able to film this event, and I think it illustrates how useful SUAS will be in the future for filming natural disasters and assisting in relief efforts.