A world first for victim rescue: the Paris Fire Brigade chooses Azur Drones for a lifebuoy experiment in the River Seine

Press release

Paris, 12 October 2022 – Autonomous drones are making their début at the Paris Fire Brigade (BSPP). As the sun rises, the Skeyetech drone climbs into the sky above the capital’s 6th arrondissement. Without pilot, it heads over the River Seine and drops a lifebuoy to a drowning victim.

In keeping with its culture of innovation, the Paris Fire Brigade has become the first fire and rescue unit in the world to deploy an autonomous solution in urban areas, in partnership with Azur Drones, the leading French company in the field of drone-in-a-box solutions.

Technology saves lives.

Every year, the Paris Fire Brigade carries out around 300 rescue operations in the River Seine, saving people in difficulty in the water. To increase the chances of victim survival, it is studying the integration of the Skeyetech unmanned drone into its operations. After receiving a call for help, the drone automatically deploys to the area where the person is drowning. It is the first to arrive at the scene and provides rescue workers with smart video via automatic victim detection using its day and night cameras. Once positioned above the person to be rescued, the drone releases the buoy. The victim can then cling to it while waiting for the swimmers and divers and the drone continues its mission of supporting the operations in progress.

With its automated operations and sensors, the Skeyetech system enables us to save a considerable amount of time on the average intervention. There is no need for a remote pilot. The teams on the ground concentrate on the most important part of the operation, i.e. victim rescue and assistance. Before the rescuers get to the victim, our teams have a real-time situation update: number and condition of the victims, context and progress of the mission… Thanks to Skeyetech, we will certainly be able to improve our efficiency and intervention time,” explains Major Mathieu Giroir, initiator and coordinator of the project within the Paris Fire Brigade’s Forward Planning & Research Department.

Time is a firefighter’s most valuable resource. With Skeyetech, Azur Drones is providing firefighters a ground-breaking solution that changes the game in terms of operational constraints and increases their operational potential. This is a real asset for the Paris Fire Brigade, which could considerably strengthen its capacities for intervention in the event of a drowning in the River Seine.

We are particularly proud that the Paris Fire Brigade has placed its trust in Azur Drones for this world first. Our solution is already present in the most sensitive installations in Europe and the Middle East; it meets the needs of major industry players in terms of security, operational support and environmental protection. Alongside the Paris Fire Brigade, a prestigious military unit operating in a very specific urban environment, today we are opening up to a new application full of meaning: victim assistance.” comments Jean-Marc Crépin, CEO of Azur Drones.

About Azur Drones

Founded in 2012, Azur Drones is today the European leader in unmanned drones. It designs, produces and deploys a unique unmanned drone solution.
Its Skeyetech system, used daily by 250 operators, is operational 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It autonomously performs safety, security and support operations in Europe and the Middle East. The company’s clients include some of the largest industrial and governmental contractors in France and abroad, such as TotalEnergies, ArcelorMittal, Orano, Oiltanking, Eamus Cork/Port of Dunkirk, Dubai Police, BASF, the European Union….

About the Paris Fire Brigade

Europe’s leading fire brigade, the Paris Fire Brigade defends 124 municipalities in the départements of Paris, Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint-Denis and Val-de-Marne. This area of jurisdiction is unique in France because of its interdepartmental nature. It has a high population density with 7 million inhabitants in a small area of approximately 760 km², an additional 2 million workers entering the Ile-de-France region every day and 50 million tourists visiting Paris every year. Protection for this area is provided by 71 emergency centres, 3 CBRN emergency centres and 2 nautical emergency centres, stretching beyond the level of the local authority to become a national issue. Respected worldwide, over the last few years the Paris Fire Brigade has influenced firefighting operations in France and abroad by adopting a bold and effective innovation strategy.
More information here: https://www.pompiersparis.fr/fr/