Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities (DOT&PF) is launching a new drone program, ARROW, that would benefit 10 remote communities during emergencies.

The Alaska Rural Remote Operations Work Plan (ARROW) will enable remote communities to conduct beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) missions using Skydio drones. The drone data will then be made available to a shared statewide geographic information system (GIS) and used in response to natural and man-made disasters affecting historically underserved communities.

This initiative is important because, in Alaska, many remote communities are vulnerable to natural disasters like earthquakes, wildfires, floods, and extreme weather events. And up-to-date geographic data ensures that first responders are better prepared for emergencies.

As Governor Mike Dunleavy puts it:

Drone technology will ensure that emergency responders are dispatched quickly to protect critical infrastructure…