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Marbella use drones to monitor crowd size on beaches and ensure social distancing by visitors

Beaches in the Spanish municipality of Marbella will be patrolled by drones during the summer, to monitor crowd size and ensure social distancing is being practiced by visitors, reports

Additionally, prospective beachgoers are being asked to download a free app, designed by Herbecom Systems, to check if there is space for them and make a reservation when possible.

The app, called PlayasApp, will enable “residents and visitors to enjoy Marbella’s 27 kms of coastline with all the guarantees and in a safe manner,” said Security Councillor Jose Eduardo Diaz.

“The need for users to choose a time slot and area through an application of this type is fundamental,” he continued.

Drones will be used to watch over Marbella’s 26 beaches, covering 430,000 sq metres, which now have a maximum capacity of 85,000 people.

The city has also hired 150 ‘beach surveillance officers’ and 40 lifeguards to work alongside 70 local police and volunteers from the Proteccion Civil.

Marbella isn’t the only coastal area to use artificial intelligence to control beach capacity. Fuengirola will employ similar sophisticated technologies, while Estepona has launched a drone lifeguard that can dispense life jackets to swimmers in trouble when out at sea.

Spanish authorities recently announced that face masks and social distancing protocols will remain mandatory nationwide until “we definitively defeat the virus, which will be when we have an efficient therapy or an effective vaccine.”

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