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Falk turns to manned drones to speed up paramedics reaching emergencies

Falck, a leading emergency response provider, is turning to manned drones to get paramedics to the scene of an emergency faster than ever, reports the company’s website.

Falck says it aims to establish manned drones as an integral part of its fire and emergency medical services before 2025. The website states the organisation will deploy eVTOL transport with a single paramedic, who can assess whether an ambulance is required. The company is initiating this VTOL emergency response efforts, initially, with an unmanned drone program.

Since 2018, Falck has been working alongside the innovative HealthDrones, a three-year project funded by Innovation Fund Denmark. The project was designed to explore how effective UAVs can be in transporting medical items like blood samples and equipment. The project has been so successful that Falck is now transitioning into operating its own drone fleet, with the addition of manned drones up-the-road.

A statement from Falck mentions the company aim to work with a yet unnamed ‘tech partner’ who will provide the manned drones and assist in the emergency operations.

According to the company, key benefits of eVTOL response are wide and varied, although it is unclear which of these benefits are the most valuable. Falck believe that improving response times, better accessing remote areas, treating patients at their homes, and reducing the number of necessary ambulance trips are at the top of the list. Part of Falck’s goal for now is to trial such situations to discover where the new flight technology can be most effective. Falck expects to carry out the manned drone trials in co-operation with customers in either Denmark or abroad and says that several customers have already expressed interest.

The German company formed in 1906 by Sophus Falck, operates today in over 30 countries with more than 25,000 emergency-trained employees.

Falck’s founding manifesto reads:

Always to assist – whether payment can be expected or not – whenever people, animals or valuables are in danger

Always to attempt to prevent and minimize the extent of the damage in the best and quickest way possible whenever an emergency occurs

Always to bear in mind that quick assistance is twice the assistance.

In addition to Falck, new technologies from Volocopter, Urban Aeronautics and Gravity Industries are entering partnerships for emergency response.

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