BRUSSELS — Flight Safety Foundation announced a collaborative initiative to work with several leading international humanitarian relief organizations to facilitate and promote the safe use of unmanned aircraft systems to support humanitarian operations. The multilateral collaborative effort, with initial participation by the U.N. World Food Programme, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and Medecins Sans Frontieres, was announced today in conjunction with the Foundation’s virtual 73rd annual International Air Safety Summit.
“Unmanned autonomous and semi-autonomous flight operations are increasingly important to humanitarian relief operations around the world because they can be used to transport desperately needed food and medical supplies, to enhance communications and for data gathering, among other missions,” said Foundation President and CEO Dr. Hassan Shahidi.
Unmanned aircraft systems are expected to play a role with global humanitarian organizations responding to the pandemic. “Once a COVID-19 vaccine is developed, this rapidly evolving technology may prove essential for delivering vaccine to vulnerable communities in remote areas,” said Shahidi. “There is no higher calling than savings lives and helping the vulnerable. The Foundation is looking forward to working closely with our partners to answer this call.”
The Foundation and its partners will collaborate to promote the safe application of unmanned systems in humanitarian missions; to provide a global platform for dialogue and information sharing on safety issues that may develop; to facilitate the sharing of best practices; to advance drone training and licensing standards; and to develop protocols for drone integration into the airspace.
The Foundation’s newly formed Autonomous and Remotely Piloted Aviation Systems (ARPAS) Advisory Committee will play a key role in supporting this collaboration.
About Flight Safety Foundation
Flight Safety Foundation is an independent, nonprofit, international organization engaged in research, education, advocacy and communications to improve aviation safety. The Foundation’s mission is to connect, influence and lead global aviation safety.
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